A new $80 million scholarship program spread over eight years for individuals in developing countries has been announced by Canadian prime minister, Justin Trudeau.
Universities Canada stated the goal of the new Canadian International Development Scholarships 2030 program is to “educate, train, and empower” thousands of people from over 24 developing countries.
The program – part of a $500m package for “key priorities”, such as food security, climate change and gender equality – was announced at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Rwanda.
It is being funded by Global Affairs Canada and will focus on providing high-quality education and training opportunities that address inequality, and help to improve individuals’ lives and communities.
Trudeau said it is a “critical time” for countries to “come together to stand up for Ukraine, while addressing the global impacts of Russia’s illegal invasion – like food security and affordability”.
“We’re also focused on growing our relationships with Commonwealth countries, including Rwanda, to create good jobs and growth for the middle class that benefit everyone, while we continue fighting climate change together.”
The scholarship is being administered by a partnership that Colleges and Institutes Canada and Universities Canada have formed with the West African Economic and Monetary Union, the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences, and the Association of African Universities.
“This new program will empower thousands of people in dozens of countries through leadership training, mentorship and education,” said Denise Amyot, CICan president.
“Canada’s colleges and institutions look forward to helping connect educational leaders from across the world to develop new tools and resources for the future,” she continued.
“Canada’s colleges and institutions look forward to helping connect educational leaders from across the world”
Universities Canada aims to reach over 7,000 people with the program, at least half of whom will be women, in eligible French-speaking and commonwealth countries, as well as Small Island Developing States.
“By supporting the development of talent and fostering the next generation of leadership in countries around the world, the Canadian International Development Scholarships 2030 program will contribute to a better, more equitable and more sustainable future,” said Paul Davidson, president of Universities Canada.
The organisation also reported that the scholarship program will maximise the resources and partnerships between Canada’s network of 236 colleges and universities, including 62 institutions that are French-speaking, and the Canadian post-secondary institutions in the developing countries.
The training and education will mainly focus on areas highlighted by the UN Sustainable Development Goals, such as STEM, climate change, administration, and health sciences. There will also be “tailor-made” programs depending on the country, and participants can engage in a program or course that directly benefits their community.
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