On the occasion of International Literacy Day 2018, UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay awarded five innovative and impactful literacy projects on September 7, 2018, from Afghanistan, Islamic Republic of Iran, Nigeria, Spain and Uruguay with the two UNESCO International Literacy Prizes: the UNESCO King Sejong Literacy Prize and the UNESCO Confucius Prize for Literacy.
The two laureates of the UNESCO King Sejong Literacy Prizes were invited by the government of the Republic of Korea to take part in the Hangul Day celebrations, in Seoul, which commemorates the creation of the Korean alphabet by King Sejong in 1446 on 7 to 11 October.
The two winners from Afghanistan and Uruguay also took part in cultural visits and activities that highlight the influence of the Hangul alphabet in the richness and diversity of Korean society.
Mr Enayat Nasir, the representative of literacy prize winning programme from Aid Afghanistan for Education and coordinator of the awarded ‘Accelerated Education for Marginalized Women and Girls’ programme said:
“I gained worthy experiences and information about the role of education in the development of Korea, and specifically, the very first starting points toward the promotion of literacy among Korean people, happened by UNESCO. I will try to explain the Korean success story of education in the context of Afghanistan to the civil society activists and communities. They will understand the importance of communities’ role in promotion of education, and will work to contribute education reforms in Afghanistan”.
Every year, the study tours take place following the awarding of the Prizes and are meant to encourage the winners to undertake future activities that promote literacy learning.
Literacy Prizewinner from Uruguay, Ms Rosita Angelo, Director of Education of the Ministry of Education and Culture, who received the award for the ‘Permanent Learning Programme’ said:
“The exchange experiences with the laureate from Aid Afghanistan for Education, the members of the Korean National Commission for UNESCO and the National Institute for Lifelong Education allow us to start planning cooperation spaces in order to work together in the future. Above all, I would like to highlight the enormous kindness with which I was greeted throughout the visit and the opportunity to get in contact with the history of the country”.
The UNESCO King Sejong Literacy Prize gives special consideration to the development and use of mother-tongue literacy education and training.
UNESCO promotes literacy around the world through a range of initiatives, programmes and cross-sector projects, and supports Member States in the areas of policies, programme delivery and literacy assessments.