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THEIR BOUNDLESS HOPE BREAKS ALL BOUNDARIES

Those left furthest behind are the ones with no legal, nor physical protection. They are the ones not accessing their right to an inclusive and continued quality education. They are hidden in the margins of the society - far away from official registers and development plans. They are hiding in the woods shattered by fear as they flee persecution in their country. They subsist in makeshift shelters in cramped camps for the forcibly displaced. They are pushed out of sight because of a disability or because of their gender or ethnicity. They are the ones forced to marry at 13 and bear children, exposed to trafficking, sexual- and gender-based violence or recruitment into armed groups and terrorist groups. As if this was not enough, they also endure their young years in countries and regions plagued by war-crimes, crimes against humanity, climate-induced disasters of epic proportions, while shackled to the chains of extreme poverty.
 
Those left furthest behind are the forgotten children and youth of the 21st Century. Today, they comprise a staggering 128 million due to COVID-19.
 
The joint ECW/UNHCR mission to the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) this month was a stark reminder of their existence, their burdens of inexplicable suffering, as well as the shimmer of hope that they carry in their young hearts: their hope for an education. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi and I traveled to Ubangi-Nord Province to meet newly arrived refugees from the Central African Republic, of whom 70% have never attended a school before arriving in the DRC. It took 14 hours to travel back and forth between Kinshasa and their Settlement of Hope in the north, established by the Government of the DRC. We travelled by air and changed planes, then we boarded all-terrain vehicles and maneuvered over dirt roads for another two hours and 33 kilometers to reach Modale village, where refugee children and youth from the Central African Republic had been transferred with their families for their safety.
 
Still, our journey to reach them was not even close to the arduous, dangerous journey the refugees themselves had taken to arrive in the DRC. Many told us how they had walked for weeks fleeing their homes, hiding in forests to desperately seek safety before crossing the border into DRC. We spoke with refugee children who together with Congolese host-communities, attended temporary learning centers and poorly equipped local schools. On the ground we also met with UNHCR, AVSI and local civil society organizations providing admirable and quality support in difficult circumstances.
 
During our meeting with the refugee children and youth, I invoked Education Cannot Wait’s First Emergency Response window and announced US$2 million to support our partners working on the ground to empower these children and youth without delay. Because their education cannot wait. They urgently need school infrastructure, training of teachers, adequate learning materials, school feeding, water and sanitation, and psycho-social services. But more needs to be done.
 
During the second part of my visit to the DRC, the Education Cannot Wait team also met with government, UN agencies and civil society partners to provide support to our UNICEF colleagues and partners, like Save the Children and WFP, among others, whose spirit of coordination and cooperation sets an shining example, as they begin implementation of a three-year US$67.5 million Multi-Year Resilience Programme for Congolese children in crisis-affected areas - and there are many in DRC.
 
Approved by Education Cannot Wait’s Executive Committee in December 2020, this humanitarian-development-peace joint programme targets three of the hardest-hit provinces in DRC affected by forced displacement – including internally displaced, returnees and deported refugee children – as well as areas affected by outbreaks of Cholera, Ebola and COVID-19. The programme covers Ituri, Tanganyika and Kasai Orientale provinces, and adopts a holistic, multi-sectoral approach to education from pre-school through to the end of secondary level in safe and protective learning environments.
 
After decades of conflicts, crises and forced displacement, the Government and the people of the DRC face a daunting, complex and multi-layered crisis. What ECW has contributed in seed funding – US$2 million for the CAR First Emergency Refugee Response and US$22.2 million for the Multi-Year Resilience Joint Programme – helps alleviate some of the most urgent needs in the education sector. But more needs to be done.
 
We urgently appeal to all our strategic donor partners, current and new, to help close the gaps of US$45.3 million for the Multi-Year Resilience Joint Programme and US$4 million for the First Emergency Refugee Response. I call on the international community to act now. The DRC is just one of the 38 countries in which Education Cannot Wait is making speedy, deep and collective investments to accelerate SDG4: access to an inclusive and continuous quality education through a multi-sectoral approach – with affirmative action for the inclusion of all girls and children with disabilities.
 
Looking at the situation in the DRC alone, it may seem like a bottomless pit – and yet there is hope. Each of these children and adolescents have a face, an identity and a dream. Their dream of an education keeps them going despite having walked hundreds of miles in terror. Their hope breaks all boundaries – boundaries that could easily hold them back from having any hope at all and simply succumbing to terror, traumas and threats.
 
In the spirit of the book, “A Hope More Powerful Than the Sea: One Refugee's Incredible Story of Love, Loss, and Survival,” authored by Melissa Fleming, who heads the United Nations Department of Global Communications – and whose inspiring interview appears in this month’s ECW Newsletter –  let us display the same courage and hope as the 128 million children and youth left furthest behind. Let us dare to be fully humane and break the boundaries of what we think we can or cannot do – so that those left furthest behind can finally see their boundless hope turning into reality through an inclusive and continued quality education.
 
Yasmine Sherif
Director
Education Cannot Wait (ECW)
Director's Corner in Exposure
RESULTS & UPDATES

NEWS

ECW INTERVIEWS UN UNDER-SECRETARY-GENERAL FOR GLOBAL COMMUNICATIONS MELISSA FLEMING

Melissa Fleming is the United Nations Under-Secretary-General for the Department of Global Communications. She oversees operations in 60 countries and platforms that reach millions of people in multiple languages. In this compelling and inspiring interview, Ms. Fleming highlights the importance of investing in education for the world’s most vulnerable children and youth.
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FRANCE PROVIDES €4 IN NEW SUPPORT FOR ECW TO SUPPORT EDUCATION IN EMERGENCY RESPONSE IN LEBANON AND SAHEL

@EduCannotWait thanks #France for its new €4 million contribution to support continued learning for crisis-affected children & youth in #Lebanon & the #Sahel region. @franceonu @francediplo_en @coaleducation @un @afd_en @franceonugeneve @francediplo @onuinfo @yasminesherif1
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ECW CALLS ON WORLD LEADERS TO URGENTLY FUND EDUCATION IN THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO WITH US$45.3 MILLION DURING RECENT MISSION

4.7 million refugee, displaced and host community children and youth are in urgent need of educational support. An additional US$45.3 million is required to reach 200,000 children and youth impacted by the large-scale, complex and protracted crisis in the DRC through Education Cannot Wait’s multi-year resilience programme.
English | French | Photos | Donor Appeal Video | Yasmine Sherif Video Modale Village | Exposure Story

ECW AND UNHCR ANNOUNCE US$2 MILLION GRANT FROM ECW TO RESPOND TO THE CENTRAL AFRICAN REFUGEE INFLUX IN THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO

“We have an urgent, shared responsibility to ensure that refugee children and youth are able to access quality education, delivered in a safe environment, at the earliest point possible during a crisis. We commend Education Cannot Wait for their commitment to providing targeted investments to support the response to the CAR crisis in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, including strengthening the national education system for the inclusion of refugee learners in a way which also benefits host community children and youth.” - UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi.
English | French | Watch Video

ECW ANNOUNCES US$1 MILLION GRANT FOR CHILDREN AND YOUTH IMPACTED AND DISPLACED BY CRISIS IN ETHIOPIA’S TIGRAY REGION

ECW announced US$1 million in emergency education grant financing to benefit 20,000 children and youth impacted by the deteriorating humanitarian crisis in Ethiopia’s Tigray region. The 12-month grant will be implemented by UNICEF in collaboration with Ethiopia’s Ministry of Education, Save the Children and local civil society, and responds to the risks posed by displacement, violence, COVID-19 and other factors that are pushing families from their homes and children out of school.
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PROJECT SYNDICATE OPINION: THE CLIMATE-EDUCATION CRISIS, BY ECW DIRECTOR YASMINE SHERIF

ECW Director Yasmine Sherif underscores the value of connecting climate change and education in her Earth Day opinion piece published by Project Syndicate. “World leaders must acknowledge the deepening links between the climate crisis and education. Over the next 30 years, more than 140 million people are expected to be displaced by climate change across South Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Latin America, at a cost of some $7.9 trillion.”
Arabic | Chinese | Czech | English | French | German | Portuguese | Russian | Spanish

HIGH-LEVEL STEERING GROUP RALLIES BEHIND ECW

In its April session, ECW’s High-Level Steering Group approved the extension of the Fund’s Strategic Plan and US$400 million Case for Investment, and continues to rally full support for ECW’s global movement to reach the world’s most vulnerable children and youth.
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ECW ACCELERATES ADVOCACY ACROSS GLOBAL MEDIA

ECW and its partners reached a total potential audience of 172 million readers in April, making headlines in leading global publications such as Project Syndicate and El País. ECW’s headlines in April focused on key messages around girls and education, refugees, funding, protracted crises, gender equality, climate change and natural disasters, children with disabilities, mental health, and safe and protective learning.
Project Syndicate | El País | Andolu Agency | Inter Press Service | GOV.UK | Xinhua | Mirage News | ReliefWeb | Agence d’Information d’Afrique Centrale | Arab News

STORIES FROM THE FIELD

THE TRAVELING BOOK

Education Cannot Wait, Plan International and global partners launched the second edition of this inspiring children’s book campaign. Together, we can shed light on the real stories of refugee children and youth fleeing the largest humanitarian crisis in the Western Hemisphere.
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BREAKING DOWN THE BARRIERS TO GIRLS' ACCESS TO EDUCATION IN UGANDA

In the Adjumani District of Uganda, the Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS), Education Cannot Wait (ECW) and other partners are working toward improving access to and completion of education for youth, especially girls. “It is the greatest gift we can give today’s youth and future generations in this unprecedented time.” - Thomas H. Smolich, JRS International.
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VIDEO HIGHLIGHT: ECW DIRECTOR YASMINE SHERIF ON BUILDING BACK BETTER IN THE DRC

"We must all help build back better for refugee children who fled violence in #CAR to Modale village #DRCongo. #ECW is proud to support
@Refugees' emergency education response, but more funding is needed now." ~ @YasmineSherif1. @un @unhcr_drc @filippograndi @hcindrcongo @stateprm
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ROHINGYA CHILDREN FIND REFUGE IN EDUCATION

ECW funding in Bangladesh is positively impacting the learning and well-being of primary and secondary-age Rohingya children in the Cox’s Bazar Kutupalong Refugee Camp. “Since 2017, ECW has continued to prioritise the learning needs and well-being of Rohingya refugees and affected Bangladeshi children in the district of Cox’s Bazar.” - Yasmine Sherif, Director of ECW.
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BRIDGING THE DIGITAL DIVIDE FOR REFUGEES IN UGANDA WITH UNHCR AND ECW SUPPORT

An ECW investment in Uganda, delivered by UNHCR, supports the COVID-19 education continuity plan to ensure students, including refugees, continue to learn. “Technology is a tool that has the potential to elevate millions of young people out of marginalization and poverty. It empowers girls and boys with previously unavailable information, new networks and channels to learn and develop 21st century skills.” - Yasmine Sherif, Director of ECW.
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SOCIAL MEDIA HIGHLIGHTS

UN HIGH COMMISSIONER FOR REFUGEES FILIPPO GRANDI AND ECW DIRECTOR YASMINE SHERIF ANNOUNCE NEW FUNDING FOR DRC DURING FIELD MISSION

Filippo Grandi
@FilippoGrandi
Thank you @YasmineSherif1 for today’s US$2million @EduCannotWait contribution to education programmes for Central African refugees and host communities in DRC. Meeting refugees together strengthened our shared resolve to help kids learn and thrive even in the most remote areas.
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FCDO HIGHLIGHTS NEED TO LINK CLIMATE CHANGE AND EDUCATION

FCDO Children, Youth & Education
@FCDOEducation
Happy #EarthDay. There has never been a more important time to address the links between climate change and education. Take a read at the article below now. @EduCannotWait @FCDOGovUK. @ProSyn: https://bit.ly/32yYDin @UN @UNEP
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UN SECRETARY-GENERAL CALLS FOR COUNTRIES TO PROTECT EDUCATION AND BRIDGE THE DIGITAL DIVIDE IN RESPONSE TO COVID-19

António Guterres
@antonioguterres
Almost 1 billion students are still being affected by school closures and restrictions due to #COVID19. At this pivotal moment, I call on all countries to protect education and use the recovery to narrow access divides, expand digital connectivity & reimagine learning.
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EU COMMISSIONER JUTTA URPILAINEN ANNOUNCES ADDITIONAL €6.5M FUNDING FOR ECW

Today, I’m pleased to announce additional €6.5M funding for @EduCannotWait. Many vulnerable children – girls, refugees & displaced – have had their education disrupted by the pandemic. To protect their future, we need to bring them back to school.
Watch Video Announcement

UNESCO’S AUDREY AZOULAY CALLS FOR INVESTMENT IN EDUCATION AND HEALTH FOR VULNERABLE ADOLESCENTS

Audrey Azoulay
@AAzoulay
#COVID19 has exacerbated challenges for adolescents through compromised education, risks to physical & mental health, lack of access to reproductive health services. We must invest in their education & health now.
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SAVE THE CHILDREN CALLS FOR €40 MILLION EU INVESTMENT IN ECW

Save the Children EU
@EUSaveTC
Great to see #EU’s continuous support to @EduCannotWait. All children, including the most vulnerable living in emergencies need to have access to education and to be safe at school.

@EUSaveTC is calling for €40million of #EU investment in @EduCannotWait. Quoting @JuttaUrpilainen: Today, I’m pleased to announce additional €6,5M funding for @EduCannotWait. Many vulnerable children - girls, refugees & displaced - have had their education disrupted by the pandemic. To protect their future, we need to bring them back to school. https://bit.ly/3g4nwdO
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CONGRATULATIONS TO AMBASSADOR SAMANTHA POWER, NEWEST ECW HIGH-LEVEL STEERING GROUP MEMBER AND USAID ADMINISTRATOR

Education Cannot Wait
@EduCannotWait
Congratulations Ambassador @SamanthaJPower! We look forward to working with you as @USAID Administrator and #ECW HLSG Member! @USAIDEducation @YasmineSherif1
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FORMER PRESIDENT OF CROATIA AND ECW DIRECTOR YASMINE SHERIF DISCUSS PATHWAYS TOWARD SDG4

Education Cannot Wait
@EduCannotWait
"To achieve the #SDGs, including #SDG4 - inclusive, quality education - we must focus on those left furthest behind, esp. children caught in armed conflicts, forced displacement & climate disasters." ~ @YasmineSherif1 w/@KolindaGK; @AUSineInstitute. #SineFellow2021 @unicefhrvatska
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NORWAY MINISTER OF INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT DAG INGE ULSTEIN ON ECW SUPPORT FOR CHILDREN IN SYRIA, SOMALIA AND THE SAHEL

Dag Inge Ulstein
@dagiulstein
Norway was one of the driving forces behind the establishment of Education Cannot Wait. Norway is the second largest donor to the fund, which in 2018 alone supported education for more than 1.4 million children and young people in countries affected by crisis and conflict, such as Syria, Somalia and countries in the Sahel region.#DetNytter
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CANADA'S MINISTER OF INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT KARINA GOULD: CANADA COMMITTED TO ENSURE CHILDREN AFFECTED BY CONFLICT RECEIVE A QUALITY EDUCATION

Karina Gould
@karinagould
Canada is committed to ensuring that children affected by conflict receive a quality education. Our contribution will support @EduCannotWait’s COVID response programming and ensure access to #education for all children.
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INSPIRING MEETING WITH ACADEMY AWARD WINNING ACTOR CASEY AFFLECK

Education Cannot Wait
@EduCannotWait
Inspiring meeting with an amazing actor and compassionate advocate for #EducationInCrises. #CaseyAffleck @YasmineSherif1 @madgethomas85
#LeaveNoOneBehind #InvestInHumamity
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UNICEF EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR HENRIETTA H. FORE: ‘EDUCATION IS A LIFELINE FOR CHILDREN IN CRISES'

Henrietta H. Fore
@unicefchief
Education is a lifeline for children in crises. Providing safe learning spaces is critical. Innovations like this can really make a difference and improve the lives of millions of children. #WorldInnovationDay
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CIVIL SOCIETY ORGANIZATIONS URGE U.S. TO EXPAND FUNDING FOR EDUCATION IN EMERGENCIES

GCE-US
@GCE_US
Over 40 organizations urge the U.S. to fund $1.1 billion for international basic #education in #FY2022, including $150 million for
@GPforEducation & $50 million for @EduCannotWait http://bit.ly/GlobalEd22 #GlobalEd22 #FundEducation #EducationCannotWait
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ECW EXCEEDS 10% TARGET FOR EARLY CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT – GLOBAL EDUCATION FORUM

Justin W. van Fleet
@justinvanfleet
Well done, @EduCannotWait on reaching the 10% investment target for the early years! @theirworld. Quoting tweet: #GlobalEducationForum: "Early childhood development is key to achieving foundational learning. #ECW is proud to have exceeded the 10% #ECD target. We thank @Theirworld @JustinVanFleet & others who set the target." ~@YasmineSherif1 ECW Director @Tharman_S @G_MachelTrust @AliciaH_1
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ECW ADVANCES ADVOCACY AT GLOBAL ACTION WEEK FOR EDUCATION #GAWECHAT

Education Cannot Wait
@EduCannotWait
We have depleted our resources ensuring we leave no child in conflict and crisis settings behind in our COVID response. But the numbers of crisis affected kids out of school has jumped from 75M to 128M. #ECW needs $400M urgently to keep responding and reverse this trend. #GAWEChat
#GAWEChat

UN DEPUTY SECRETARY-GENERAL AMINA J. MOHAMMED: ‘REIMAGINE EDUCATION’

Amina J Mohammed
@AminaJMohammed
Together we can reimagine education to keep all children #SafeToLearn.
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‘COVID-19 SHOULDN’T ROB CHILDREN OF THEIR EDUCATION – CANADA IN BRAZIL

Canada in Brazil
@CanadaBrazil
#COVID19 shouldn’t rob children of their education. Canada is supporting @EduCannotWait efforts to help +9 million crisis-affected children continue their #education safely. See what has been achieved so far https://bit.ly/31RBMOO
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ECW RESPONDS TO THE CRISIS IN YEMEN WITH WFP

WFP Yemen
@WFPYemen
#School is a tent for these kids in Mokha, #Yemen. Their school building was destroyed by airstrikes. Another casualty of Yemen's war. But their #Education doesn't have to be. @WFP's school feeding programme helps keep children in school. #EducationCannotWait #YemenCrisis
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NORWAY HONORED TO PARTNER WITH ECW IN THE DRC

Ambassade de Norvège à Kinshasa
@NorwayInDRC
Les enfants des réfugiés et des communautés hôtes en RDC méritent aussi l’accès à l’éducation! Nous sommes honoré d’être un des partenaires financiers pour l’éducation dans les crises a travers @EduCannotWait - nouveau soutien de 2 mill USD pour la RDC juste annoncé. @UNICEFDRC
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ECW AND THEIRWORLD CALL FOR RESPONSE TO ST. VINCENT VOLCANO ERUPTION

Theirworld
@theirworld
The devastating volcano eruption in St. Vincent has left thousands of children out of education. Together with @Educannotwait, we're calling on the international community for urgent action to ensure that no child is left behind.
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LE HCR VA POUVOIR CONTINUER À AMÉLIORER L’ACCÈS À L’ÉDUCATION DES ENFANTS REFUGIÉS CENTRAFRICAINS

Grâce à @EduCannotWait, le HCR va pouvoir continuer à améliorer l’accès à l’éducation des enfants réfugiés centrafricains + membres de la communauté hôte à travers le renforcement des infrastructures éducatives nationales.
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REBUILDING SCHOOLS WITH UNICEF IN MOZAMBIQUE

UNICEF Moçambique
@UNICEF_Moz
O UNICEF e a @terredeshommes com o financiamento da @EduCannotWait, apoiaram na implementação de programas de reconstrução pós-Idai em 8 escolas e 32 escolinhas dos distritos de Dondo e Beira. A Educação não pode parar.
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TAKING ACTION WITH GLOBAL CITIZEN

Global Citizen Impact
@GlblCtznImpact
Unless we act now, more than 1 in 3 children globally who can't access remote learning opportunities amid the COVID-19 pandemic, may never return. But guess what? @EduCannotWait
is working to help fix just that. Will you take action?
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GCPEA – TOOLKIT FOR COLLECTING AND ANALYZING DATA ON ATTACKS ON EDUCATION

Education Cannot Wait
@EduCannotWait
@GCPEAtweets releases its Toolkit for Collecting & Analyzing Data on Attacks on Education (supported by #ECW) to: Strengthen monitoring, analyze impacts of attacks, design prevention & response plans To access: https://bit.ly/3cppfZa #educationunderattack #protecteducation
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CONTRIBUTIONS & PLEDGES TO ECW

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OUR DONORS AND PARTNERS

Education Cannot Wait (ECW) is the first global fund dedicated to education in emergencies and protracted crises. ECW was established during the World Humanitarian Summit in 2016 by international humanitarian and development aid actors, along with public and private donors, to help reposition education as a priority on the humanitarian agenda, usher in a more collaborative approach among actors on the ground and foster additional funding to ensure that every crisis-affected child and young person is in school and learning. Figures for donor contributions and pledges are rounded up. Variations may occur due to exchange rates and fluctuations from local currencies to $US. 


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