South Sudan's women are more likely to die in childbirth than complete primary school. Photo courtesy of Oxfam International under Creative Commons

South Sudan's women are more likely to die in childbirth than complete primary school. Photo courtesy of Oxfam International under Creative Commons

South Sudan's women are more likely to die in childbirth than complete primary school. Photo courtesy of Oxfam International under Creative Commons

High illiteracy rates and rigid gender roles are just two of the many challenges for the women of South Sudan. Tony Calderbank, the British Council's director in South Sudan, writes about their position in local society, and how the British Council is providing training to help them overcome some of the barriers they face.

Opinion on multilingual education in Sub-Saharan Africa is divided. Photo by GPE/ Deepa Srikantaiah on Flickr / Creative Commons

Opinion on multilingual education in Sub-Saharan Africa is divided. Photo by GPE/ Deepa Srikantaiah on Flickr / Creative Commons

Opinion on multilingual education in Sub-Saharan Africa is divided. Photo by GPE/ Deepa Srikantaiah on Flickr / Creative Commons

In many Sub-Saharan African countries, English becomes the official language of instruction at a relatively early stage in a child's education, often with confusing effects. As our collection of academic papers, Multilingual Education in Africa: Lessons from the Juba Language-in-Education Conference (ed. Hamish McIlwraith), is presented in Juba today, 29 August 2013, our country director in South Sudan, Tony

Acholi dancers perform in South Sudan (image credit: George Lasu)

Acholi dancers perform in South Sudan (image credit: George Lasu)

Acholi dancers perform in South Sudan (image credit: George Lasu)

Some 60 languages are spoken in South Sudan. Our country director writes about the country's extraordinary linguistic diversity, recently celebrated during a cultural evening organised by the British Council and partners in Juba.

Downtown Tripoli (image credit: David Stanley via Flickr)

Downtown Tripoli (image credit: David Stanley via Flickr)

Downtown Tripoli (image credit: David Stanley via Flickr)

Amid bombs and security alerts, the British Council signed an agreement with Libyan officials which we hope will smooth the path of up to 5,000 Libyan scholars due to study in the UK each year. Cherry Gough, British Council Director Libya, reports.

London-based poet Francesca Beard performs in Khartoum (image credit: Mohamed Altoum)

London-based poet Francesca Beard performs in Khartoum (image credit: Mohamed Altoum)

London-based poet Francesca Beard performs in Khartoum (image credit: Mohamed Altoum)

In celebration of World Poetry Day, poet Francesca Beard writes about her visit to Khartoum with the British Council Sudan in January 2013 and shares two poems from her visit.