In first world countries like the United States, education may be taken lightly by most. Compared to the majority of the nations in the world, entering primary school, graduating from high school, and even getting a bachelor’s degree is made possible because of the availability of student loans, government subsidies, and various scholarships. For other countries, however, education is deemed a faraway dream.
Developing nations, particularly those in the Sub-Saharan region, are caught in a never-ending dilemma: because of the steady rate of out-of-school youth, their economy suffers, and vice versa. These countries face a chicken-or-egg paradox. It has been a regular occurrence for years.
A growing number
Statistics in 2010 showed that children living in northeastern Africa are least likely to be sent to primary school, and most do not even receive education for the rest of their lives at all. This number continues to swell in the years that follow, and perhaps also becomes compounded because of several external factors taking a toll on their economy.
The cycle continues as well, as these children who grow up and eventually raise children of their own soon repeat the same cycle.
The significance of education
Despite its apparent financial burden to those who acquire it, studies show that sending children to school in African countries is less expensive compared to doing the opposite. This fact is most especially true in the government, as costs in dealing with issues related to lack of education are significantly more expensive compared to the budget needed for raising and maintaining primary schools in the region.
For individual families, on the other hand, sending their children to at least primary school should be seen as an investment rather than as an expense, because education does pay back in the long run. More employment opportunities are open to individuals who have basic credentials. The higher the studies, the more doors open for them.
At the same time, pursuing education may contribute to a better quality of living, as evident in more developed nations. Education, therefore, is not just financially rewarding: it also makes an individual more wholesome, fulfilled, and more informed to make the best decisions for his or her life.
The solution to the battle
Although developing countries in this continent are entangled in the economic trap that is both a cause and a result of the lack of education, there is some good news. In the world, several international partnerships help relieve developing nations financially, as well as in other aspects.
Nonprofit organizations such as the Patokh Chodiev Foundation have helped developed individuals by supporting the Moscow State Institute of International Relations or MGIMO, which is one of Russia’s most active philanthropic research institution catering to the future of young people around the world.
By strengthening more of these partnerships, and exploring the potential of individuals who suffer in the economic depression that their country is in, the world becomes a better place for everybody: a place of equal opportunity, intercultural equality, and individual growth.