Today I launch the MIKTA (Mexico, Indonesia, Republic of Korea, Turkey and Australia) Education in Emergencies Challenge, a call for ideas to improve education outcomes for children and youth – especially girls – in emergencies.

The Australian Government is contributing $2 million to support proposals that improve the delivery and development of educational content, facilitate safe places to learn or engage communities in better education outcomes in crisis-affected countries.

The Challenge is calling for ideas that apply new technologies, adapt existing approaches or develop new business models. Successful recipients will have access to expertise to help them develop and implement their ideas, reinventing the way we provide education in emergencies.

Emergencies such as natural disasters, armed conflict, prolonged displacement and extreme drought, can have a devastating impact on education. More than 75 million children and young people are currently out of school in 35 crisis-affected countries, with girls being 2.5 times more likely to be out of school than boys.

Australia is working with its MIKTA partners to help children access basic education services and develop the knowledge and tools they need to thrive despite the disruptions that emergencies bring to their lives.

I encourage people with an innovative idea to participate in the MIKTA Education in Emergencies Challenge. Applications are open until 25 June 2017 and further details on the Challenge including how to apply can be found here.

MIKTA is an innovative partnership that brings together our five countries based on shared values and interests. As the 11th, 13th, 15th, 16th and 17th largest economies in the world, the MIKTA countries are significant economic powers and play pivotal strategic roles in our respective regions.

The MIKTA Education in Emergencies Challenge is being delivered by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade's innovationXchange, which was established in March 2015 to form new partnerships and identify innovative approaches to improve the effectiveness and impact of the Australian aid program.

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