Turkey in brief
|Area:||780 580 km²|
|Population:||79 463 663 (2016)|
People in Need (PIN) began supporting Syrian refugees in Turkey in February 2016 in response to the growing needs of the high volume of refugees living there as a result of the Syrian crisis.
The Syrian conflict, which has forced over 4.8 million refugees from the country and internally displaced a further 6.5 million, is the world’s single largest driver of displacement. Syria’s neighbouring countries of Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq and Egypt host 94% of all Syrian refugees. To date, Turkey has registered over 2.7 million Syrian refugees; hosting more Syrian refugees than any other nation in the world.
34.2% of registered Syrian refugees in Turkey are between 5-17 years of age and should be in school but less than half of these children have access to education. For Syrian refugee children in Turkey, as in other host countries, a number of obstacles stand in the way of their education. Among such challenges are the language barrier; social integration factors; transportation; and economic hardship.
School fees and transportation costs hinder families’ capacities to send their children to school, as parents choose to prioritize expenditure on basic needs like food and electricity rather than on education. Many families left their homes in Syria taking only what they could physically carry with them and as such many have been forced to resort to negative coping mechanisms to survive in their new circumstances. Such negative coping mechanisms affect the entire family regardless of age. Children often have to work to supplement family income and child marriages have also become more common as a means to relieve financial pressures.
People in Need’s education programme in Turkey
In coordination with the Turkish Local Education Authorities, People in Need began supporting three Temporary Education Centres in Hatay province in February 2016. So far People in Need has supplied over 1100 students in these three schools with learning kits, and 51 teachers with practical teaching materials. In addition to this, People in Need recognises the importance of supporting refugee children through psychosocial and social integration activities in order to more fully support the learning and wellbeing of the child.