Secretary-General launches new drive to meet MDG on educationListen /
More than $1.5 billion in commitments have been made to support a new initiative by the UN Secretary-General to ensure all children have a chance to go to school.
Education First aims to mobilize the world to achieve the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) of universal primary education by the 2015 deadline.
Speaking at the launch in New York on Wednesday, Ban Ki-moon described education as essential to progress.
"Education is a basic building block of every society and a pathway out of poverty. More education means less vulnerability to extreme poverty and hunger, more opportunities for women and girls, more health and basic sanitation, more power to fight HIV, malaria, cholera and other killer diseases. Indeed, progress on education brings progress on all of the Millennium Development Goals." (Duration: 36″)
Dozens of companies and private foundations have supported Education First. Pledges have also come from Australia, Bangladesh, South Africa, Timor-Leste and Denmark.