WeWorld has been present in Syria since 2011, even before the start of the conflict, initially with interventions in the field of education in favour of Iraqi refugees in Aleppo.
Since 2014, with the intensification of the conflict, we have been working to provide humanitarian assistance to the Syrian population and to internally displaced people in the Aleppo area, in the rural area of Damascus and in Deir-ez-Zor with projects related to education and to water.
We work to support the social groups in difficulty, including internal evacuees and returnees. The main beneficiary groups are girls and boys between 5 and 17 years old. Furthermore, particular attention is given to the disabled and to children with special needs.
In Syria, the protracted conflict has had a dramatic impact on the quality of education and on school infrastructures. The spaces protected and suitable for educational activity are insufficient and cannot accommodate all the students. We operate to rehabilitate the infrastructures and install prefabricated classrooms. The facilities are designed to be inclusive and accessible in terms of gender and disability. In addition, the classrooms are equipped with school supplies, such as desks and chairs.
The rate of early truancy in the country is high. This is why we have opened centres to support young people at risk, carried out awareness-raising campaigns on school reintegration and on the importance of education and have activated help desks to support parents and the community.
The war also caused a severe shortage of teachers. Those who have remained have to cope with the demands of overcrowded classrooms, with many children suffering from post-traumatic stress disorders. For this reason, we are committed to providing educational material and to organising training courses for teachers on the topics of active learning, psychological support and risk education regarding explosive devices, unexploded devices and mines.
In Syria, water management infrastructures have been damaged, water resources are often insufficient, both in quantitative and qualitative terms, and the community’s personal hygiene education is inadequate.
Our interventions aim to increase access to drinking water for the most vulnerable subjects through the repair of the infrastructures, the reopening and equipping of water supply points as well as the promotion of appropriate hygiene practices through awareness-raising campaigns.
With those who flee from the war
We also work in the Bekaa Valley, on the border between Lebanon and Syria, to support refugees and the Lebanese community, thus mitigating the negative social and economic consequences of the Syrian crisis. We promote access to income and employment, in particular for women, young people and people with disabilities, through the strengthening of their technical skills, the access to job opportunities and the support of self-employment.
In order to improve access to quality educational services for refugees and the host community, we have improved the reception and integration capacity of schools, promoting the school inclusion of children with special needs.