Bahrain to fund new school for Syrian refugees in Jordan

Published February 8th, 2016 - 10:00 GMT
The Bahrain Academic Complex was the first school in the Zaatari refugee camp and houses 16 classrooms and one nursery. (Xinhua/Mohammad Abu Ghosh)
The Bahrain Academic Complex was the first school in the Zaatari refugee camp and houses 16 classrooms and one nursery. (Xinhua/Mohammad Abu Ghosh)

Bahrain will build a new school for Syrian refugees in Jordan. It follows the success of the Bahrain Academic Complex, which opened in the Zaatari refugee camp in 2012, Royal Charity Organisation (RCO) secretary general Dr Mustafa Al Sayed told the GDN. 

He said the existing school was teaching 9,000 students and had produced top-tier students, but the location for the new school had not yet been finalised. “We are building another school for Syrian refugee children In Jordan,” Dr Al Sayed said after the screening of a short documentary about the current school yesterday at the RCO’s headquarters, in Seef. 

“We have not decided which camp to set it in yet. “In a single year, we have about 9,000 students between two shifts, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. “Some that have graduated went to university and some of those were top in their governorates.”  He said it was important that the school was run by Syrian refugees, who had been teachers and educators in Syria. 

“It’s very important that teachers are Syrians too because they know the language to communicate with the students, but they also know the emotions they’re going through and have empathy with them,” he said. “It also means that these people, who were professionals in their own country, are keeping busy within their fields.  “We have to thank the Jordan Education Minister and Unicef for all the help they’ve provided us.” 

The Bahrain Academic Complex was the first school in the Zaatari refugee camp and houses 16 classrooms and one nursery.  “We’ve seen the appreciation from the headmaster to the students and seriousness and professionalism of the schools,” Dr Al Sayed said.

“His Majesty King Hamad had the right vision when he guided us to build a school at the beginning of the conflict. “The object is not to leave a gap in their education and give them a hope for a better future.  “The time that has elapsed since has proved the wisdom in building the school. “We are very glad that it is serving a useful purpose – we want the people of Bahrain to be proud of their contribution there. “These are people who have seen suffering beyond imagination and have had to flee the sounds of bombs falling and tanks.  “His Majesty has provided them a safe refuge, which we hope is only temporary, until peace prevails and they can return home.” 

He added that Bahrainis were set to travel to the camp next week on Valentine’s Day. “Rana’a Al Jalahma and Lamsaa Al Hasaar will be going to the Zaatari camp accompanied by RCO volunteers,” he said. “Ms Al Jalahma will be donating $10,000 worth of educational toys to the children, which is her own initiative, we only facilitated it. “Ms Al Hasaar will be donating colouring books and teaching the children how to paint.“That’s what they want – to know that they are not alone and that we stand with them.” 

The Zaatari refugee camp is home to some 80,000 refugees facing difficult conditions, including temperatures ranging from below zero in winter to 40C in summer.  

By Laala Kashef Alghata
 

 


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