04 Aug 2016

ACTED Resumes Child Protection Programming in Syrian Refugee Camps in Erbil

Following a five month funding gap, ACTED, supported by the United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF), resumed its Child Protection in Emergencies programming in two Syrian refugee camps in Erbil Governorate, the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.

As of the end of January 2016, funding for the Syrian refugee response in Iraq had so significantly decreased that ACTED faced the real possibility of having to shut down child protection programming in two Syrian refugee camps in Erbil Governorate. In the midst of emergency contingency planning for the military operation in Mosul City, funding opportunities to provide life-saving services for Syrian refugee children was seriously limited.

ACTED Child Protection staff, living and working in Qushtapa and Darashakran refugee camps, volunteered for free for four months to continue benefiting the children, who have been forced to endure protracted displacement. Among the services provided were recreational activities, such as music, arts, sports, and games. The volunteers also offered non-formal educational activities, such as litereacy, math, Arabic, Kurdish, and English. Moreover, the volunteers held promotional activities to raise awareness of the rights of the child and of positive coping mechanisms.

The volunteers were able to sustain activities on a limited basis and provide minimum services for vulnerable and at risk children residing in the camps. However, it took six months to successfully secure funding to continue the operations of two integral Child Friendly Spaces (CFS) and Youth Friendly Spaces (YFS) and specialized child protection case management in the camps. As of June 2016, ACTED received funding from UNICEF to reopen both CFS/YFS on a fully operational basis until the end of January 2017.

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