14 Jun 2012

OU and Save The Children International sign Memorandum of Understanding

The OU has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Save the Children International, the world’s leading independent organisation for children. Working in almost 120 countries, its programmes in health, nutrition, education, protection and child rights reach 100 million children.

Martin Bean, Vice-Chancellor of The Open University said: “Save the Children International is a trusted local presence in the regions in which we’re already engaged in teacher and health education for professionals. We believe that this is the logical next step in enabling The Open University to extend the reach of our international development programmes in a sustainable way. Taken together with their international role as an advocate and policy-shaper, it creates a relationship that can only further enhance the success of our existing programmes.

“The formalisation of a partnership with Save the Children International is a clear and exciting signal of our growing presence and reputation within the international development sector.”

Janti Soeripto, Deputy CEO of Save the Children International said: “We are excited to have the opportunity to work together with The Open University. We see a lot of complementary competencies across our organisations and a shared desire to have more impact for children. We are looking forward to tapping into the knowledge and expertise of the OU in the area of distance learning and using new technologies to scale up programs as well as sharing best practice in the area of knowledge management.”

The Open University has been committed to international development for over twenty years and is globally recognised for its teaching and pioneering research within the sector, and for driving innovation. Uniquely, the OU also helps deliver development programmes in partnership with governments, NGOs, funding institutions and local partners. Our programmes across sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia address areas such as frontline health, teacher education and English language teaching.

About The OU in Asia
As one of the lead partners in English in Action, an initiative led by BMB Mott MacDonald, the OU is working in partnership to transform the English communication abilities of 25 million people across the country by 2017. Building on this, the OU has just received a £953,523 grant from Kusuma Trust UK for Teacher Professional Development in Secondary Science and English in Hardoi, Uttar Pradesh, India.

About The OU in Africa
Launched in 2005, in direct response to requests from teacher education institutions across the region, TESSA (Teacher Education in Sub-Saharan Africa) is transforming the education of primary and secondary school teachers across Sub-Saharan Africa. Since launch, TESSA materials have been used to reach over 430,000 teachers, the programme has received over £4m in funding and we have won numerous awards.

HEAT is an accelerated and scalable Healthcare Education and Training programme for frontline healthcare workers, providing them with vital healthcare skills and enabling them to stay living and working in their communities while learning. The programme launched in Ethiopia in 2011, with £4m UNICEF funding and in close partnership with the Ethiopian Government, the World Health Organisation and AMREF. Discussions are now underway to replicate the model across sub-Saharan Africa, helping the region reach and train the 1 million additional health workers needed to reach its Millennium Development Goals.


For further information contact:
Paula Feery – 01908 652580 or 07540 668963

About The Open University
The Open University (OU) is the largest academic institution in the UK and a world leader in flexible distance learning. Since it began in 1969, the OU has taught more than 1.7 million students and has more than 264,000 current students, including 18,000 overseas.
The OU has been one of the top three UK universities for student satisfaction in the National Student Survey every year since the survey began in 2005. In 2010/11 it had a 93 per cent satisfaction rating. Over 70% of students are in full-time or part-time employment, and four out of five FTSE 100 companies have sponsored staff to take OU courses.
In the UK’s latest Research Assessment Exercise (RAE 2008) the Open University was ranked in the top third of UK higher education institutions. More than 50% of OU research was assessed in the RAE as internationally excellent, with 14% as world leading.
Regarded as Britain’s major e-learning institution, the OU is a world leader in developing technology to increase access to education on a global scale. Its vast ‘open content portfolio’ includes free study units on OpenLearn, which has had more than 21 million visits, and materials on iTunes U, which has recorded over 50 million downloads. The OU has a 41 year partnership with the BBC which has moved from late-night lectures in the 1970s to prime-time programmes such as Frozen Planet, The Secret History of Our Streets and Empire.

About Save The Children International
Save The Children International is the world’s leading independent organisation for children, working in over 120 countries, focusing on the poorest and most marginalised children. Last year it raised and spent over 1.4 billion USD, reaching 100 million children with our programs in health, nutrition, education, protection and child rights and responding to over 30 emergencies.

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