Rajasthan's Directorate of Literacy and Continuing Education has been awarded the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation's (UNESCO's) Confucius Literacy Prize for 2006 for its Useful Learning through Literacy and Continuing Education Programme in one of India's poorest and largest states.
The Rajasthan project was one of two winners of the US$ 20,000 Confucius prize, the other being Ministry of National Education, a national literacy initiative designed specifically for marginalised adolescents in rural areas. The UNESCO prizes are awarded annually in recognition of particularly effective contributions to the fight against illiteracy, one of UNESCO's priorities. The National Commission for Human Development of Pakistan won the US$ 20,000 International Reading Association Literacy Prize for a national programme that provides literacy classes to adults and out-of-school children, collects data through door-to-door surveys and encourages community involvement in the enrolment of children in schools. The winners will receive their prizes from UNESCO on International Literacy Day, September 8.