Child Refugee Crisis

by Save the Children Federation
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Child Refugee Crisis
Child Refugee Crisis
Child Refugee Crisis
Child Refugee Crisis
Child Refugee Crisis
Child Refugee Crisis
Child Refugee Crisis
Child Refugee Crisis
Child Refugee Crisis
Child Refugee Crisis
Child Refugee Crisis
Jakia receives treatment at our health facility.
Jakia receives treatment at our health facility.

Four years after the massive exodus of Rohingya Muslims from Myanmar to Bangladesh, amid a global pandemic, nearly one million people remain stranded in Cox's Bazar, the largest refugee camp in the world. 

With your help, Save the Children has been providing essential services to nearly 600,000 Rohingya refugees and the local community since 2017. Our 1,715 staff and volunteers continue with life-saving work in camps and host communities, thanks in part to your generosity. Here are summaries of work they have performed in recent months.

Responding to COVID-19

Cox’s Bazar is one of the hot spots in Bangladesh for COVID-19 transmission because of the high population density in camps and the challenges of maintaining social distancing. We and other organizations are better prepared to respond to COVID-19 than in 2020, given our investment in widespread community health prevention strategies as well as specialized health facilities to identify, isolate and treat patients with COVID-19.

Health Care

We remain a leading healthcare provider in camps, running 8 health posts and a 24/7 primary care facility in addition to our COVID-19 Isolation and Treatment center. Facilities serve refugees and people in host communities. At all facilities, we also offer mental health and psychological support to help refugees who experienced the trauma of fleeing Myanmar and are faced with the stress of living a day-to-day existence in camps, and to people from host communities.

Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene

Clean water and hygiene keep children and families healthy and reduce the risk of COVID-19 and other communicable diseases. Our teams continuously repair and maintain a large network of latrines, bathing stations, water wells and water supply systems. This includes the very necessary but unenviable work of “de-sludging” latrine pits so they can continue to be used. New facilities are constructed as needed.

Education

Now that the government has announced all schools in Bangladesh can reopen, we are reopening our temporary learning centers in camps in a phased manner across school grades.

Child Protection

While the pandemic forced the suspension of some of our protection work, social workers and volunteers support and follow up on especially vulnerable children in camps and host communities. We provide psychological support through home-based visits rather than having groups of children attend our child-friendly spaces.

Food and Nutrition

Each month, we provide food commodities and fresh vegetables; we also distribute cash vouchers so families can choose for themselves which foods they purchase. Providing cash vouchers is more efficient than food distributions, and supports markets in camps and the livelihoods of those who run them. Our nutrition services – screenings for malnutrition, a supplemental feeding program and individual counselling on infant and young child feeding for pregnant women and nursing mothers – continued with limited staff due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Your support of the Child Refugee Crisis Fund helps make our lifeline of support possible. Thank you again for standing by us and by the side of children and their families.

 

*All names have been changed for privacy and protection reasons

Banna received a wheelchair from Save the Children
Banna received a wheelchair from Save the Children
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Kids like Dana benefit from supporters like you.
Kids like Dana benefit from supporters like you.

Dana*, 12, is originally from Dair Ezzor in Syria. Her family of ten have been living in Al Hol displacement camp for three years. Dana only managed to complete the first year of her schooling before her family were forced to flee their home. Since then, Save the Children’s Temporary Learning Space in the camp has been Dana’s main source of education. She has been a student at the Temporary Learning Space for the three years her family have been in Al Hol. It has made a huge difference to Dana’s life and the life of her family.

In the words of Dana’s mother, “I was hoping that my children can have the opportunity to study here [Al Hol camp]. They didn’t before. The schools were getting bombed. So there was no education. Now, I have five children attending Save the Children school here”.

Save the Children currently operates eight Temporary Learning Spaces in three camps in North East Syria. Temporary Learning Spaces provide access to quality non-formal education opportunities for children aged six to 17, many of whom have faced multiple displacements and have been out of school for a prolonged period of time. Indeed, many children have never been to school at all. Temporary Learning Spaces offer two education tracks to meet the learning needs of each child:

1) Basic Literacy and Numeracy for children aged nine and above who have not yet acquired these foundational skills.

2) The Self Learning Program - a curriculum designed for children to achieve competencies in line with the formal school system.

Each Temporary Learning Space supports 400-600 children. These children are also supported through recreational psychosocial support activities.

Dana works on a poem in a Temporary Learning Space
Dana works on a poem in a Temporary Learning Space
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Ava, learning remotely
Ava, learning remotely

Aya, 10 years old, has been displaced for three months. Her family was forced to flee in the middle of the night because their neighborhood was hit by shelling. 

To stop the conflict robbing children of their education, Save the Children and its partner Shafak have turned four buses into brightly painted mobile classrooms. The aid agencies take school to some of the 575,000 displaced children at the heart of the crisis.

The mobile classrooms teach core subjects such as Arabic and math, as well as providing structured emotional and psychosocial support along with games to help children recover from the traumatic experiences they have been through. Each supports around 80 children at a time.

Aya says that she's not scared in the bus, and that her favorite subject is Arabic. She hopes to become a doctor so she can help the Syrian population.

Due to COVID-19 rules, the busses have moved to a distance learning model. Teachers film themselves giving lessons in the bus and send them to their students via Whatsapp. They also provide educational activities, hold discussions and set homework and classes are delivered to the same students who were enrolled before the suspension of schools.

Thanks to the support of people like you, Save the Children is able to continue reaching the most marginalized children. Thank you for your support!

Recording a remote lesson at a mobile classroom
Recording a remote lesson at a mobile classroom
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For children in Syria who were struggling before this COVID-19 pandemic, things have only gotten worse. After ten years of conflict and displacement, 4.6 million children in Syria are now battling soaring malnutrition rates.

As the pandemic continues, Syrian refugee families will be pushed even further into poverty and child labor will increase. Even before the pandemic, prolonged exposure to war, stress and uncertainty left many children in a state of "toxic stress." Now, it's estimated that 2.1 million Syrian children are out of school.

Thanks to people like you, our work for the children of Syria is making a difference. Your support is reaching the most vulnerable children in Syria and in the refugee hosting countries. Inside Syria, you have supported over 3 million people, including 2.1 million children since the start of the crisis.

Our humanitarian teams and partners in Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Iraq and Turkey are also present in camps and host communities, providing Syrian refugees and vulnerable children from these host communities with food, shelter, water and sanitary services, and access to medical care, education and child protection.

  • Protected 32,239 children from harm
  • Supported 78,708 children in times of crisis
  • Provided 169,633 children with a healthy start in life
  • Gave 5,052 children vital nourishment

See the attached timeline to see how Save the Children has been responding to the crisis in Syria for the last 10 years. Thank you for your support.


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Razan, 8 years old after an airstrike in Yemen
Razan, 8 years old after an airstrike in Yemen

Eight-year-old Razan* (name changed for her safety) seriously injured her eye while fleeing violence in Hodeidah, Yemen in July 2018.  She was riding with her father, Samir,  on a motorcycle when an airstrike hit another vehicle on the same street. A piece of shrapnel from the blast hit Razan in her eye, and immediately caused heavy bleeding and intense pain. As the heavy shelling continued, Samir was forced to continue their journey for safety, and only had time to wrap a shawl around her head.

 After an hour they arrived in Almrawah district and Razan’s eye was still bleeding heavily. Samir took her to a nearby hospital to try and stop the bleeding and treat her eye, but the hospital wasn’t specialized enough to help. They advised Samir to take her to a specialist eye hospital, but the family couldn’t afford the bus-fare.

Razan spent five days at home in intense pain, while her eye became more inflamed. Her condition kept deteriorating and she could no longer see through her injured eye. Finally, Samir found someone who could lend him enough money for the transport costs to hospital, and he rushed her there immediately. When they arrived, they met a member of Save the Children Team, who referred Razan for emergency surgery. After her surgery, Save the Children then referred Razan to a hospital in Sana’a for surgery and later for specialist treatment.

After two long surgeries, Razan’s eyesight was saved.  About a year after her operation Razan started getting constant headaches, so she was referred again to a specialist who recommended she get special glasses. Save the Children paid for the glasses and psychosocial support to help Razan recover from what she has been through. In 2020 during a check in Razan reported that she was feeling much better, and the glasses were very helpful. Her headaches has stopped ad she has started going to school again. 

Thanks to supporters like you, Save the Children is able to support the recovery of children like Razan, caught in conflicts they had no part in starting.  Thank you for your support! 

Razan, a year later in recovery
Razan, a year later in recovery
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Organization Information

Save the Children Federation

Location: Fairfield, CT - USA
Website:
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Twitter: @savethechildren
Project Leader:
Lisa Smith
Fairfield, CT United States
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