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FEATURE STORYNovember 13, 2023

Education in the eye of the storm

Education in the eye of the storm

Tropical Cyclone Freddy ravaged the southern Indian ocean for five weeks in February and March 2023, leaving a trail of destruction along coastal communities in the region. Among those most impacted by the disaster were children.

In Mozambique, approximately 1,500 classrooms were destroyed by Cyclone Freddy, disrupting learning for half a million students.

“Cyclone Freddy destroyed a lot of things. It destroyed homes. Destroyed crops. Destroyed schools. We stayed one month without going to school. We had to study under a tree and sit on the ground because the desks were submerged,” says Aladina Zacarias, a student at the Inlima Primary School in Zambézia Province, Mozambique.

Globally, climate change related disasters have become more frequent, with 1 billion children worldwide at extremely high risk due to climate impacts.

To help address this issue, the Global Partnership for Education – of which the World Bank Group is a long-standing member – is working to promote climate-smart education systems. This includes offering financial and technical support to include climate risk in education plans, fostering cross-sector coordination and access to finance for adaptation efforts.

Education in the eye of the storm is a Global Partnership for Education virtual reality project, produced in partnership with the World Bank and UNICEF Mozambique, that enables people to experience how education is being impacted by climate-related events, and how children, their families, and communities are responding and adapting.

This virtual reality video transports you to Maganja da Costa, a district in Zambézia Province, Mozambique, to experience the impact of Tropical Cyclone Freddy. Listen to the personal stories of the children, families and teachers affected by the storm, and witness first-hand the efforts to rebuild communities in wake of the disaster.

Visit to access videos, photos, interviews and other content to understand the enormity of the destruction caused by Cyclone Freddy – and the consequences for children’s education.

For two decades, the Global Partnership for Education has been delivering funds and solutions to build stronger education systems in countries affected by extreme poverty or conflict. Find out more here

Globally, the World Bank is the largest financier of climate action in developing countries delivering over $31.7 billion in our fiscal year 2022. Find out more about our work on climate change here.


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