A lost generation
The lack of education for Iraqi children is a tragedy. According to the UN, nearly half of Iraq’s internally displaced children are out of school. In areas heavily affected by violence, more than 90% of children are not in school. The long-term impact of this is devastating.
What we are doing to help in Iraq
We have been operating in northern Iraq since the beginning of 2015. We quickly identified that lack of education was a problem which was not being addressed. Many of the UN refugee camps in the region set up schools. However, most Iraqi Christians are outside the UN camp system and education opportunities are scarce.
In consultation with church partners, our team on the ground provides much-needed financial assistance to a kindergarten in Erbil which caters for around 130 Christian children.
We also provide textbooks and stationary to Christian children in the Ankawa 2 IDP camp in Erbil.
In keeping with our non-sectarian approach, we also provide textbooks and stationary to a school for Muslim girls in the Harsham IDP camp in Erbil.
What we are doing to help in Jordan
In Jordan, lack of education for Iraqi Christian refugees is an ongoing problem. As a persecuted minority in a foreign land, they are reluctant to send their children to predominantly Muslim state schools and so the only option for them is a church school or a private school (which can be very expensive).
To help plug the gap in their education, we are providing English language classes for a growing number of refugee children in and around the capital.
Hopes for the future
We are in the process of expanding our education work which we hope will include art projects, cultural awareness courses, and a reconciliation curriculum. Watch this space.