• Unesco, organisation des Nations Unies pour l'éducation la science et la culture
  • Sipa Press


An unprecedented photo report dedicated to children around the world

Transdev commitment

Public transportation: making the right to education a reality for all

These images capture the extraordinary resolve of boys and girls to overcome all challenges – whether these concern gender, disability, location, ethnicity, language, conflict or natural disasters. They express also the overwhelming importance of education for young people, as the way to develop fully, to find a route out of poverty and to become global citizens. This is the power of education.

Director-General of UNESCO.

In providing the means to enable a growing number of children around the world to reach class, public transport plays an important daily role in helping make the right to education a reality for all. This issue is one to which the women and men of TRANSDEV are particularly sensitive.

In transporting billions of travellers throughout the world, they are well placed to observe that in both the city and the countryside, lack of mobility remains a key source of inequality, denying some access to essential services and goods. With their sense of public interest, our employees are acutely aware that their mission goes well beyond simply “transporting passengers”. We look to them to go further, to perform their profession with the maximum emphasis on safety, efficiency and comfort. This is especially so when it comes to taking care of schoolchildren: supporting children is an act of commitment, shared by the public authority who organizes the community school bus service and the operator responsible for its implementation. In addition to providing efficient solutions for mobility, public transport networks also foster a spirit of civility. In facilitating the act of living together in communities, public transport networks reinforce societal bonds. In connecting regions, they reduce zones of exclusion and build new connections between people. They thus contribute to reducing divisions and inequality in society – helping to make better the world that we will bequeath to our children.

Local elected officials are well aware of these stakes regarding the organization of mobility. All social progress begins with education. Whether it is the children of Casablanca who work two to three hours daily or the Alaskan schoolchildren able to confront the coldest winters, each of these students who arrive at their school are recalled to us through this book. On their behalf and on behalf of all their fellow learners, I am proud to support a project that will, I hope, serve to advance the cause of our children throughout the world.

Chairman and CEO of TRANSDEV.

Photography plays a crucial role in bringing home the striking differences in access to education around the world. In the Journeys to School photo exhibition, Sipa Press, one of the world’s leading photojournalism agencies, has shown how photographic images can inform and impress. The roads taken by the children to arrive in class are also scenes of human adventures in which links are forged between generations or where singular stories occur, the moment captured by the photographers who followed the students on their journeys.

Eighteen photographers were selected from throughout the world to participate in this unprecedented documentary, which begins with a photograph taken by Göksin Sipahioglu, founder of Sipa Press, more than 40 years ago. We have chosen to involve photographers from all backgrounds to reflect the universal dimension of the paths of the schoolchildren. They worked simultaneously in December 2012 and January 2013, producing the powerful and compelling testimony through their work on the need for education to be truly a universal right for all children, including girls.

The photos from the Journeys to School speak to us in multiple ways: we recognize and remember our own route to school, learn about other cultures and living conditions and appreciate the courage and tenacity of children. They also offer the hope of a different future than that of the conflicts, epidemics and violence that all too often are captured through the lens of our photographers.

Miguel Ferro,
President of SIPA PRESS.