Advancing Adolescence: Getting Syrian refugees and host-community adolescents back on track

The conflict in Syria and subsequent exodus of Syrians into neighboring countries has reached its fourth year. This report analyzes the impact on Syrian refugee and host-community children. A recent study by UNHCR has shown that adolescents are experiencing a range of hardships including isolation, insecurity, psychological stress, disruptions in education, and exploitative employment. The future for these children is in question so long as humanitarian efforts are not coupled with more future-oriented strategies that prepare children and adolescents with the education and skills they need to help rebuild their lives and societies.

Mercy Corps conducted focus group discussions in Jordan and Lebanon in order to complete a situation analysis and subsequent list of findings and recommendations. Among the findings, adolescent girls and Syrian girls revealed staggering physical and social isolation. Boys revealed a consuming sense of hopelessness about their situation as well as vulnerability to humiliation and social tension.

In order to address the hardships facing Syrian and host-community youth, programs need to be tailored to the needs of the adolescents and be situation specific. 

Published 2014-09-02

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