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Bleak Outlook for Children Who Are Refugees

by Roger Neugebauer
November/December 2013
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Article Link: http://exchangepress.com/article/bleak-outlook-for-children-who-are-refugees/5021466/

“I want to be a doctor so I can help ­children. If they come to see me and they don’t have money, I will give them medicine, a prescription, and an injection so they can get better.”

This is the dream of Aya, an eight-year-old Syrian refugee in Lebanon as shared in ExchangeEveryDay on September 25, 2013 (www.childcareexchange.com/eed/issue/3439/). Even though she is eager to learn, she has not been to school in two years and is not likely to return in the foreseeable future.

Aya’s story is not unique " she is one of more than 700,000 Syrian refugees under the age of 11. And, it is the children who pay the heaviest price of displacement. This trend report will examine the plight of these children.

A Worldwide Crisis

The UN Refugee Agency reports that at the end of 2012, there were 15.4 million refugees and 28.8 million people forced to flee within the borders of their own countries. These numbers have increased significantly by those forced from their homes in Syria in the past 10 months (UNHCR, 2013).

War remains the dominant cause. A full 55% of all refugees come from just five war-affected countries: Afghanistan, Somalia, Iraq, Syria, and Sudan. And, sadly, it appears ...

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