Thousands of children and young people, including those affected by the conflict in Iraq, and those who have fled the Syrian conflict to neighbouring Lebanon and Iraq, are not able to access education, healthcare and other essential services in their host countries.
Unemployment is at critical levels amongst internally displaced, host communities and the refugee population.
Christian Aid is strengthening the resilience of young refugees, internally displaced people (IDPs) and host communities in Lebanon and Iraq, through education, psychosocial support, economic empowerment activities, and direct service provision.
The Syrian conflict has triggered the biggest displacement crisis of this century. In addition to the 6.5 million displaced internally by the conflict, more than 5 million Syrians have fled as refugees, and the vast majority are now living in Turkey, Iraq, Jordan and Lebanon.
Iraq has been suffering from a continuous humanitarian crisis as a result of war and internal political and ethnic conflicts. The toll of conflict since the 2014 rise of Islamic State has been enormous, and exacerbated by the brutal conflict in Syria. Whilst the humanitarian context in Iraq has transitioned into a new phase, there remains 6.7 million people in need of assistance, 1.7 million IDPs and 253,000 Syrian refugees.
Lebanon, with a population of approximately 4 million people, hosts the largest number of refugees in the world, per capita. One in four of the Lebanese population is a Syrian refugee. Currently there are 450,000 registered Palestinian refugees, as well as at least 1 million registered Syrian refugees.
Lebanon and Iraq are under significant economic stress and lack the resources and capacity to manage this massive displacement crisis.
Those who are displaced are often marginalised from the wider host community, from education, access to health, legal services, and employment. Marginalisation makes them more vulnerable, and they are often perceived as a threat by the host community.
Without schools to go to, children are forced into begging or child labour, including prostitution, to support their families.
Our project provides direct services including education and vocational training, benefitting over 2,000 people.
To promote greater integration and social cohesion, we seek to bring together beneficiaries from different communities, ethnicities and religious groups.
Iraq: Kirkuk city and Tikrit. Lebanon: Beirut, Mount Lebanon, Sidon, Tyre, Akkar and Tripoli.
From October 2017 to December 2020
2,126 vulnerable young men and women affected by conflict and displacement. (1,280 in Lebanon and 846 in Iraq).
Foundation of United for Relief and Sustainable Development (FUAD) in Iraq, Mouvement Social Lebanon (MSL) in Lebanon
Bread for the World, Christian Aid supporters and private trusts and foundations
Vulnerable and marginalised people affected by conflict and displacement in Iraq and Lebanon will report increased empowerment and access to services, leading to greater resilience and social cohesion. Specifically:
Iraqi youth affected by displacement are economically empowered and integrated into the host communities.
Syrian and Lebanese children and youth of school age affected by displacement regularly take part in education and access psychosocial activities.
In Lebanon, we provide:
- Remedial education and psychosocial support for 1,280 children from refugee families and host communities in line with Ministry of Education-approved curricula.
- Financial support for children whose families cannot afford materials such as books and stationary.
In Iraq, we provide:
- Vocational training for 846 unemployed young people from both displaced and host communities. Participants receive life-skills training in conflict management, and challenging group-based perceptions, pre-conceptions, and prejudices.
Following this, they will take part in contextually-appropriate vocational skills training and will be supported to set up their own small businesses with small business start-up kits.