Worldwide, 132 million girls are out of school. The COVID-19 pandemic has further widened the inequities, and it is estimated that another 20 million more girls could be forced out of school after the crisis has passed.

In Nigeria, where girls traditionally have had limited and unequal access to education opportunities due to poverty and child marriage, the closure of schools following the pandemic further heightened the stark gender inequities, creating a crisis in girls’ education.

By removing the barriers to accessing distance-learning options, this project aims to provide gender-equitable distance learning during current and future school closures.



girls were targeted through this program


primary and secondary school students (the majority were girls) engaged with the program through calls and text messages.


We funded a 3-month project from May 1 to July 31, 2020, that was rolled out across five states to enable children to continue learning from home through a more accessible medium – the radio.

Targeting 65,000 girls, the educational radio programme - ACE Radio School – was fulfilled by the NAMA Fund and mobilised through The Big Heart Foundation’s Girl Child Fund in partnership with the Malala Fund, co-founded by Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai.

Focused on a participatory approach, the ACE Radio School covered various subjects such as biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics, numeracy, and literacy. Lessons were aired in English and local dialects three times a week on five radio stations.

Ten thousand primary and secondary school students (the majority were girls) engaged with the programme through calls and text messages. In addition, instructional material on hygiene helped create greater awareness of COVID-19 and methods to prevent and control its spread.

 A YouTube channel was also created to reach wider audiences and low-income families to provide permanent access to lessons to bridge the digital education divide.


To provide an enabling environment for women to access knowledge, services, support systems and resources, through a development network that advances them to reach their highest potential – in short, we are working towards building an equitable world for women.

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