Bridging the Education Gap
Aya was forced to flee the war in Syria when she was just four years old. She didn’t see the inside of a classroom until she was eight. Aya is now ten and finally in school in Jordan - thanks to the Back to the Future programme…
Jordan is home to more than 750,000 refugees - that’s almost ten per cent of the total population. More than half of these refugees are children - the majority of whom were forced to flee the conflict in neighbouring Syria.
Aya (10) is just one of the thousands of displaced Syrian children in Jordan. She was forced to leave her home - together with her parents and eight sisters - when she was just four years old.
Her family moved to the coastal city of Aqaba - where Aya had to stay at home for two whole years for her own safety. “It made me sad to have two years pass by for nothing,” she says.
“I always dreamed of the day I could get to school and meet new friends.”
Back to School
Aya is now finally back in school - thanks to the ‘Back to the Future’ programme. The programme - a joint initiative from War Child, Terre des Hommes and AVSI - addresses the needs of children in Jordan and Lebanon denied access to formal education.
Children from both refugee and host communities take part in activities. Syrian refugee children in Jordan are often unable to access education - either because they have never previously attended school or because of the educational disruption they have experienced as a result of the war.
Aya is one of the lucky ones who have reclaimed their right to learn. She receives extra support and homework help to make up for the lost years she was out of school. She is a fast learner and teachers praise her for her strong grades and excellent behaviour.
"I only regret that I got a 9.5 out of 15 for one exam," she laughs. "But I was very sick. I couldn’t prepare myself properly."
*All names in this story have been changed to preserve the safety of the children who take part in our programmes.