Updated Mar 10, 2020

Dual Accelerated Learning program

Part of Norwegian Refugee Council

NRC employs an innovative family-centered approach, creating education opportunities for vulnerable Afghan women, men, girls & boys in Iran.


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Stage 3: Proof of Concept

Focus Areas:

Literacy and Teacher Development and Training

Literacy and Teacher Development and TrainingSEE LESS

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Country Implemented In


There are multiple impediments accessing education by Afghan children in Iran. Vulnerable families frequently resort to negative coping mechanisms, including reducing food intake (80%), child labor (75%) and child marriage (57%). A recent Decree by the Supreme Leader (attachment), allows all Afghan children to register in school regardless of their legal status. NRC would like to build on this momentum through a family-centered approach creating a protective environment conducive to learning.



The idea is to place the family unit at the center of the intervention and provide mutually reinforcing learning opportunities for children and parents alike. Children will benefit from literacy/numeracy classes (Accelerated Education Programs AEP) and life skills while parents can attend positive parenting and literacy classes. The approach will allow a higher degree of engagement with the school environment through the activation of Parent Teacher Associations. Afghan community workers will be trained in order to cascade those skills further into their communities. NRC has piloted this family centered approach in a previous UNHCR supported project. Several excellent working relationships with education partners such as the Literacy Movement Organisation (LMO), Directorate of Education (DoE) and State Welfare Organization (SWO) have developed. The project worked with 360 families and was successful in increasing vulnerable children_s access to education. It also enhanced the protective environment for the families both inside and outside the school and the home. Testimonials from members of the community demonstrate how people_s lives have improved. For the parents, passing the LMO literacy test was a major achievement. Fathers have expressed a strong desire for their children to obtain the same fundamental educational skills. Parents realized that they are enablers of a positive learning environment for children. Children can register in formal schools upon AEP completion.

Target Beneficiaries

Depending on funding, this approach will benefit up to 500 Afghan families in at least 10 Afghan communities. Vulnerable Afghan families with undocumented members will be prioritized. Traditionally, in some societies, females were prevented from participating in education by male members of the family. By targeting the whole family, including fathers and sons, the innovation leads to positive changes in attitudes and behaviors towards girls' education and increase their access to education. Afghan focal points in each community will receive Training of Trainers to provide further literacy and life skills classes to their communities. A large number of trusted women will be included in the ToT to ensure sustainability for females. Synergies will be created with other NRC units, such as legal counselling, for this idea to maximize its impact. Legal counseling will ensure that undocumented children in school access 'blue cards' which protect all family members from deportation.

Mission and Vision

The Norwegian Refugee Council is an independent humanitarian organisation helping people forced to flee. We work in crises in 31 countries, where we help save lives and rebuild futures.

Innovation Description

This project proposes dual Accelerated Learning program that will simultaneously provide Afghan children in iran with literacy and numeracy classes and Afghan parents with positive parenting and literacy trainings.


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