Investigating the relationship between literacy, health and women’s empowerment

  • September 2016

To mark the fiftieth anniversary of International Literacy Day on 8 September 2016, the UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning (UIL) has published a research paper entitled Promoting Health and Literacy for Women’s Empowerment. Written by Dr Anna Robinson-Pant, this paper is the third in a series of studies on literacy and women’s empowerment.

The paper discusses the links between health, well-being, women’s empowerment and education, focusing on the role of literacy. It argues that cross-sectoral approaches involving stakeholder collaboration across these three areas will be essential in realizing Sustainable Development Goal 5: to ‘achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls’.

Literacy, health and women’s empowerment in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

By identifying good practices from all world regions, this paper shows how literacy programmes with a health component will contribute to achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Providing lifelong learning opportunities to women and girls enables them to make informed decisions about their health and that of their communities. The urgent need for these opportunities is apparent when we consider that women constitute two-thirds of the world’s 758 million adults who cannot read or write a simple sentence.

This publication includes information on programmes that can also be found on the UNESCO Effective Literacy and Numeracy Practices Database (LitBase).

The first two publications of the Literacy and Women’s Empowerment series are:

  • Author/Editor: Anna Robinson-Pant
  • Promoting Health and Literacy for Women’s Empowerment
  • UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning, 2016
  • ISBN
  • Available in: English, French