It has been more than 9 years since the start of the conflict in Syria. More than 6 million people have fled Syria as refugees, and another 6.2 million remain displaced inside the country. According to the United Nations Children’s Fund, two of every five schools have been damaged or destroyed in the course of the conflict. Those that have managed to remain open are overcrowded and an additional 1.3 million children are at risk of dropping out. In addition, children face major risks of violence and exploitation as seen in the significant rise in child marriages, labour and soldiers. Many young people have experienced severe physical and psychological trauma.
Canadian Jesuits International (CJI) supports the work of Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) Middle East and North Africa (MENA) in a region where the needs of forcibly displaced people remain extremely challenging. JRS has been responding to the emergency crisis in and around Syria since 2011, witnessing firsthand the extent of the suffering of Syrian families. Nine years after starting emergency services for forcibly displaced people, JRS teams are increasingly devoting resources to the social and psychological needs of children and their families as well as to educational programs for both children and adults.
JRS has also adapted to changing conditions brought about by COVID-19. Group learning has been transformed into one-on-one sessions and the promotion of hygiene practices, such washing of hands, use of masks and social distancing, has been integrated into the education programs.
We cannot do it alone. You can make a difference by making a donation to help those most in need survive the crisis and work towards a better future.
JRS Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa (MENA): Fr Daniel Corrou SJ
Please support the work of JRS among forcibly displaced people in Syria by making a donation: