Life Skills and Citizenship Education in the Middle East and North Africa

8 May 2018

The situation of learning in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) continues to need improvement, and more governments in the region are acknowledging the importance and benefits of an educated and responsible population. Educational systems in the region currently do not tend to rely on cognitive problem-solving skills and instead reward students for being passive rather than active learners. The situation calls for a holistic, lifelong and rights-based vision of education. Maximising the potential of all children and youth better equips them to create meaning out of knowledge and to face the transition from childhood to adulthood. This is the aim of the MENA Life Skills and Citizenship Education (LSCE) Initiative, started in 2015, which supports countries in the region to improve learning.

The LSCE Initiative is led by UNICEF in collaboration with partners at country, regional and global levels. To facilitate the reach and benefits of the initiative, it was decided that an online presence was crucial. A website was drafted that would allow stakeholders to communicate and provide updates about ongoing programmes and developments from the region. QUO worked closely with UNICEF’s Middle East and North Africa Regional Office (MENARO) to develop a clear and intuitive website, allowing the easy distribution of news, archiving of resources and dissemination of knowledge. 

The key features of the LSCE website are the interactive “wheel” on the homepage explaining the 12 Core Life Skills, and expansive resources and glossary sections. The resources page offers an online library of viewable and downloadable documents, organised at global, regional and country levels, with an interactive map that allows visitors to search for resources by country. The glossary feature, still in development, will be an A-Z list of key terms that explains all aspects of life skills and citizenship education, including the names of organisations and programmes, as well as sector-specific terminology. As the LSCE initiative develops, the glossary will be continuously updated with new items to help all stakeholders keep up-to-date on the latest news and advancements relevant to the region. 

Visit the LSCE website at