The USAID Middle East Bureau recently awarded Social Impact the $5 million Middle East Education, Research, and Training Support (MEERS) Program. SI will work with the Bureau as well as USAID Missions throughout the Middle East and North Africa to provide on-going data and research to better understand and address the most pressing educational challenges in the region. Over the next four years we will support USAID to:

  • Meet the educational and psychosocial needs of refugee children.
  • Provide teachers with training and resources.
  • Conduct rapid assessments for decision making in fluid situations.
  • Provide real-time data collection and analysis.
  • Fill in knowledge gaps on region specific early grade literacy and numeracy, early childhood education and youth development.

SI Executive Vice President Kerry Bruce commented, “We are excited to leverage our experience in the Middle East with our research on countering violent extremism and youth development.” She added, “MEERS is an important part of our work to advance development effectiveness through our fast-growing education portfolio.”

MEERS will largely focus on education access, relevance, and quality issues stemming from the conflicts in Iraq, Syria, and Yemen. SI will conduct a variety of multi-country research and technical support activities to address these issues by:

  • Investigating ways to mitigate the effects of the conflicts and their impact on the education sector.
  • Supporting programs to improve the quality and relevance of education for conflict-affected populations.
  • Gathering information and develop durable solutions to increase access to high quality, safe educational opportunities for vulnerable children and youth.
  • Delivering professional development and training opportunities for USAID staff and partners.

Dr. Andrew Epstein, Senior Education and Evaluation Technical Specialist and Jade Lamb, Technical Specialist, will be leading MEERS. As a subcontractor, FHI360 will assist in implementing and coordinating the continuous data collection activities throughout the region.