I used to have a peaceful life and live in my amazing home in Deraa [Syria]. I enjoyed the nature around my house and the food coming from the land. The brutality of the civil war forced my family to leave this house and to start the journey to be refugees.

 I am behind two years in school because of moving from one school to another. I want to finish my education, to help my family, and to help other people that want to learn. —Shafaq, 14 years old

MECA’s partners in Lebanon have established classes for children who have fled the violence in Syria and who are not able to enroll in local schools. They are studying Math, English, and Arabic reading and writing. The children also participate in sports, field trips, art, storytelling and drama classes, visits to a mobile library, and workshops in human rights.


Syrian Refugees in Lebanon

Syrian refugees in Lebanon are determined to ensure that their children get an education but one in four Syrian children do not attend school. Many parents cannot afford school-related costs like transportation and school supplies, or they rely on their children to work instead of attending school. Most refugees are forbidden from establishing legal residency and earning a living. They are afraid they will get arrested if they are caught working. In addition, some school directors impose additional enrollment requirements; there are not enough spots for the refugees; some classes are taught in French or English; and the curriculum itself is very different from schools in Syria. Girls, older children, and children with disabilities face particular barriers to enrolling.

Location: Bekaa Valley and Beirut, Lebanon

Since the outbreak of the Syrian crisis in 2011, more than a million refugees have crossed from Syria into Lebanon seeking safety and shelter. More than 75% are women and children. Many are “double refugees. “ originally from Iraq or Palestine. This influx has added strain on the country’s economy and infrastructure. The pressure is felt in all sectors including education, health, housing, water and electricity supply.

MECA Project Partners

The Children of Al Jalil Center (CJC), Bekaa Valley, Lebanon
Palestinian Women’s Humanitarian Organization, Beirut, Lebanon