Why Do Children Drop Out of School in Southeast Asia?

Education-2-Header-600x321Around the world, education is one of the most effective ways to help children and families escape long-term poverty. But in the countries where Holt works in SE Asia, this basic right of children is not easily obtained.

In impoverished communities across SE Asia, parents often let their children drop out of school to enter the labor workforce at very early ages. But high dropout rates, lack of education and poverty are all primary factors contributing to child trafficking.

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Children as young as 12 who drop out of school have become easy targets for traffickers who recruit them with the promise of job placements in big cities. Sometimes, they end up in very harsh working conditions. Others are trafficked for far worse reasons.

Preschools or daycare for children ages 3-5 are also not available in many rural areas in SE Asia — resulting in delayed social, language and academic development. In some countries, the frequent migration of parents to seek jobs in big cities has resulted in children not having access to preschools. Many parents simply can’t afford to send their children to preschool, or do not understand how education impacts the development of their children prior to Grade 1.

But by giving the gift of school supplies, books and uniforms, you can help children continue their education and empower them to pursue their dreams. In Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines, you can also help reduce the risk of abuse and child labor.

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Without your help and partnership, Holt could never reach so many lives in SE Asia and the many other countries where we work. Thank you for being part of a big cause serving children and families around the world!

Thoa Bui | Senior Executive of South & Southeast Asia Programs

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