According to new data from UNESCO, there are 758 million adults 15 years and older who still cannot read or write a simple sentence. Roughly two-thirds of them are female. That means that approximately 1 in 10 adults in the world cannot read or write. For young women in sub-Saharan Africa, the rate remains very low: 4.5 of every 10 are illiterate (the literacy rate is 65% for that group).
Illiterate people are more likely than literate people to be poor, have children at an earlier age and lack opportunities to participate fully in society and have meaningful employment. The social costs of illiteracy are very big.
Project Literacy is a global movement that brings together a diverse cross-section of people and organizations from all over the world to build partnerships to improve literacy. They created the Alphabet of Illiteracy to demonstrate some of the possible effects of illiteracy in an impactful way.