After nine years of brutal conflict in Syria, half of children have grown up knowing nothing but conflict and over 5 million are in need of humanitarian assistance. Many live in areas where basic services are almost non-existent and the infrastructure they rely on has been decimated.
More than half the population has been forced to flee their homes, with 6.2 million people currently internally displaced and 5.7 million refugees. Many children have lost a close relative or have a parent or sibling in detention, missing or disappeared, and thousands have been orphaned or separated from their families in the chaos of war.
Attacks on education, displacement and child labour have contributed to a situation in which 2.1 million children are out of school, depriving them of basic skills and a safe and protective environment. Rates of malnutrition, disease and disability have increased markedly over the course of the conflict. Children report feeling afraid, anxious and sad, with many showing signs of emotional distress.
We have been working tirelessly to reach children affected by the war in Syria since 2012. We provide emergency and lifesaving support, combined with early recovery activities that help restore basic services for children and their families.
Our goal is to ensure that every child in Syria survives, learns and is protected. We have reached over three million Syrians to date including over two million children. We have supported seven primary health care clinics, a maternity hospital, Child Friendly Spaces, as well as 125 education facilities, which include formal schools, informal learning centres and vocational training schools to support education at all levels.
We provide food and nutrition support to ensure children are healthy and well nourished, and help families find sustainable incomes to meet their needs.
Our work also raises awareness of child protection issues. We provide mental health and psychosocial support for the most marginalised and vulnerable children, including unaccompanied and separated children. Through our family tracing and reunification work, we help reunite children that have been separated from their families.
We focus on inclusion, diversity and gender. And, we advocate for child-centred early recovery in Syria, which puts the needs of children and their communities at the heart of recovery and rehabilitation.
Abdul Hamid Badis Street,