DAI Hosts Literacy Day Panels and Book Launch in Pakistan

September 04, 2019

On September 12, DAI will host a panel event to commemorate International Literacy Day in Islamabad, Pakistan. Later the same day, DAI’s Vice President for Technical Services Brigit Helms will discuss her recent book—“Access for All: Building Inclusive Economic Systems.”

The education event convenes education experts, practitioners, policy makers, researchers, and students to discuss learning approaches in Pakistan—with a focus on identifying locally led solutions to support the most marginalized children. The discussion will encompass public-private partnerships, inclusionary approaches, and teacher facilitation and support.

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Shafqat Mehmood, Minister of Federal Education and Professional Training, will give the keynote address. Panelists include Mehnaz Akber Aziz, Member of the National Assembly; Saima Anwer, U.K. Department for International Development; Umbreen Arif, education consultant; Khadija Shahper Bakhtiar, Teach for Pakistan; Aban Haq, Innovation Fund Karandaaz Pakistan; Murad Raas, Minister of School Education, Government of Punjab; Soufia Siddiqi, Technical Consultant, Government of Punjab; Sarah Sheikh, Family Educational Services Foundation.

“Access to education is a key challenge in Pakistan and of equal concern is the quality of education,” says the head of DAI’s Education practice, Sakil Malik. “Pakistan has committed to raise its literacy rate from 58 percent to 70 percent in four years by providing school access to approximately 22.8 million students and improving the quality of its education system. DAI has been working with the federal and provincial government, local educational organizations, and civil society to realize these goals for the children of Pakistan.”

The Director of Education in our Europe office, Zehra Zaidi, says, “There is an urgent need for investment in the education sector vis-a-vis joint action between public and private sectors, improving the quality of teaching, increasing education reform, and ensuring that education is reaching the most marginalised and disadvantaged children across Pakistan.”

After the education event, Brigit Helms will discuss how her recent book traces two pathways out of poverty: access to services and access to jobs. “Access for All explores how countries can leverage market forces to ensure a more inclusive economy, leaving no one behind,” says Helms.

Helms has 30 years of experience pioneering innovative approaches to financial inclusion and market-based solutions to poverty. She has worked in the public and private sectors, including with McKinsey & Company and the World Bank Group, and holds a Ph.D. in development and agricultural economics from Stanford University.

In a panel discussion focused on the inclusiveness of the Pakistani economy, Helms will be joined by Robina Ather, National Tariff Commission; Ali Sarfraz Hussain, Karandaaz Pakistan; Syed Mohsin Ahmad, Pakistan Microfinance Network; and Roshaneh Zafar, Kashf Foundation.

Helms in Nigeria.jpgHelms presents in DAI's Nigeria office.

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