Every Child. Everywhere. In School. initiative promotes involvement through localized support and outreach.
The Seventh-day Adventist Church and its global humanitarian arm, the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA), announced the second phase of the Every Child. Everywhere. In School. campaign during this year’s global church leadership meetings on October 13, 2020.
The joint initiative will now mobilize government support in countries around the world through the Adventist Church’s 22-million-plus membership — including individuals, church ministries, schools, and partners — to influence positive change so that every child can have access to education.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has created even greater challenges for the most vulnerable children,” Ted Wilson, president of the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, said. “Ninety-four percent of the world’s student population has been impacted by this crisis. It is our responsibility as a global church to ensure that we care for children as God cares for us.
“The Adventist Church has one of the largest Christian educational systems in the world, and with more than 22 million church members globally, we have the moral and Christian obligation to ensure that every child, everywhere has access to a quality education, regardless of race, religion, or circumstance,” Wilson added.
The first phase of the grassroots advocacy effort kicked off in October 2019 with a petition drive aimed at collecting a million online signatures by 2020, to raise awareness and support for the millions of children, adolescents, and youth globally who lack education. According to the latest report by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) data, one out of five children and youth are out of school, and the coronavirus pandemic is responsible for the largest disruption in history, affecting 1.6 billion learners in more than 190 countries, across every continent.
The Every Child. Everywhere. In School. campaign surpassed its one-million-petition goal in July 2020. ADRA and Adventist Church members in nearly 200 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, the Americas, and the South Pacific pledged their support to call on world leaders, local governments, and decisionmakers to take action to improve children’s education everywhere.