As the intensity of violence decreases, children head back to school with UNICEF support
DAMASCUS/AMMAN/HONG KONG, 31 January 2017 – In the past weeks, UNICEF has supported the re-opening of 23 primary schools in the eastern parts of Aleppo city, allowing nearly 6,500 children to return to school.
UNICEF has provided school supplies, developed an accelerated learning programme and trained teachers to help displaced children catch up on the months and years of education they have missed. Ten prefabricated classrooms were also set up.
An urgent awareness-raising programme has been rolled out to inform children and families about the dangers of unexploded remnants of war. So far the programme has reached 50,000 children. Psychosocial support activities have been provided to 35,000 children in shelters and other locations, to help them recover from the horrors they lived through.
UNICEF provided “schools in a box” and recreational kits to 90,000 children in Idlib and west rural Aleppo. UNICEF-supported professional development courses benefitted 280 teachers.
“Getting children back to learning is one of our key priorities,” said Hanaa Singer, UNICEF Representative in Syria. “School provides children with a much needed sense of routine, and offers a place to learn, play, heal and reconnect with their childhood.”
There is much more work to be done. An estimated 1.7 million children in Syria are currently out of school.