Zimbabwe Education Cluster: Humanitarian Response & COVID-19 Sitrep #2: 30 April 2020


Key figures

853,032 learners (ECD to Grade 7, ages 3 to 12) targeted under the Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP) through Education in Emergency support across 33 districts with severe needs.

4.56 Million learners are currently affected and targeted under the COVID-19 pandemic. The cluster is targeting to reach them with various activities to address their needs.

35,000 learners have been reached with HRP related activities with 6,350 learners being reached with COVID-19 related activities as of March 2019.

15 operational partners with activities planned, ongoing or completed.

Humanitarian needs

• The education system in Zimbabwe was already stretched before the COVID-19 pandemic as a result of multiple crises, including the impact of Cyclone Idai last year, the economic crisis coupled with hyperinflation and the ongoing drought. The combined effect of the humanitarian crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic is expected to have far-reaching implications for the protection and wellbeing of children as well as their readiness for school, attendance and participation in learning.

• Before the onset of the COVID-19 epidemic, estimates by the Education Cluster were that of the more than 3.4 million children of school going age (3 to 12 years), at least 1.2 million (35 per cent), would need emergency and specialized education services in 2020. This includes more than 853,000 children in acute need, such as: children not enrolled in school; orphans and other vulnerable children (OCV), including children with disabilities and children living with HIV; and those in need of school feeding

• While Zimbabwe closed schools to contain the spread of COVID-19 and to protect school populations, prolonged closures represent major risks for children, teachers and school communities. Without a well-resourced response, the COVID-19 epidemic will exacerbate existing vulnerabilities among children, with lasting negative impact on children’s’ education and learning outcomes. Without a conducive and disease-free school environment, COVID19 poses a risk to children’s health and wellbeing. The cluster is targeting 3.5 million learners in early childhood education, primary level and secondary level through prioritization of activities.