Sultan al-Jassim “Abu Mohammed” from the town of Souran, in the northern countryside of Hama, was a local teacher in the village elementary school for 20 years. Due to the war, Sultan was forced to move and live in IDPs camps in the area of Ma’arat al-Nu’man in Idlib, under very harsh conditions. IhsanRD’s team met Sultan during the water services activities of WASH program, as the members of the team were impressed by Sultan’s determination despite his difficult circumstances and age, dreaming in a better future. He graduated from high school with his son and daughter at the same time. He managed to succeed and booked seats at the University of Idlib to study Arabic and his daughter in the Faculty of Education and his son in the Faculty of Architecture. Sultan goes to university every day with his two children and returns to their tent, which does not protect them from hot in summer or cold in winter, believing that man can change his reality with determination and will.
The story hasn’t finished yet … the suffering of Fawzi and his family has not ended with the end of their displacement from Ghouta to northern Syria.
Fawzi, like many heads of displaced families, needs to work so his family can survive.
This is what IhsanRD seeks to achieve through the integration of cash-for-work activities projects in Syria.
Difficult days Fawzi has passed through during the journey of displacement from eastern Ghouta, where he witnessed with his family times filled with fear and terror.
Fawzi’s suffering did not end despite the end of the displacement journey from Ghouta to the north, he ran into a painful reality there, where job opportunities are almost non-existent, what caused more suffering and anxiety for him and his family and continued lacking most of the necessities of life. He even lived hard times similar to those he lived during the siege of the eastern Ghouta.
Today, Fawzi, thanks to his work in one of the workshops on school rehabilitation projects supported by IhsanRD in the city of Idlib, has been able to provide support for his wife and children, Fawzi will return home with the needs of his family. That is the happiness that Fawzi hopes to continue alongside his work.
Fawzi’s story resembles dozens of stories of people who have managed to achieve some of their dreams that are limited to getting a job that provides them with some basic needs that helps them to survive.
The end of the semester does not mean stop going to school! At “Zakaria Batos” school and four other schools in Idlib city, the students continue to attend their classes during the summer. So, why do children prefer to go to the school during the summer vacation instead of enjoying and playing with their friends in the neighborhood or staying at home for rest and relaxation?
The summer clubs that IhsanRD has launched this year witnessed a high turnout among children from the 1st class up to the 9th class of basic education. Education team at IhsanRD is carrying out summer clubs in 5 schools in Idlib, Al-Dana, and Jabal-Sam’an, with up to 1,000 children who prefer to spend the summer vacation with their friends at the school club, where several recreational activities are held such as painting, acting and sports, in addition to the group activities that develop a spirit of friendship and collaboration among them. And certainly, the basic subjects are being taught for students such as mathematics and Arabic and English.
The impact of these clubs is evident in building a strong relationship between the children and the school so that the process of education becomes beloved for children, this changing became clear as the children of neighboring schools enrolled in summer clubs at these schools.
In addition to the activities of summer clubs, in cooperation with one-world children’s organizations, the same schools receive displaced children who, during the ordeal of displacement, have been forced to drop out of their schools, in non-formal education activities aim at providing these children with major subjects such as Arabic, mathematics, and English to help students who have missed their classes.
The number of students who enrolled in these courses reached 1,060 students from the 1st to 6th class in four schools in Dana and Jabal-Sam’an districts.
As an integral step between the programs at IhsanRD, there is a cooperation with the protection program to refer special cases such as the existence of disability or difficulty in educational achievement, which requires the intervention of the protection team to follow cases and help them to overcome the ordeal and better coexistence with friends and surrounding environments.
Education is a natural right for every child. So is playing outdoors and enjoying Syria’s nature in the springtime. The education team at IhsanRD organized a field trip for students attending schools supported by King Salman Relief Center in Daraa Governorate.
Some parents prefer to keep their children at home over sending them to school in case of bad weather or if they fear that their health will get worse when the children are already ill. In Syria, children are going to school despite the ongoing war. Education cannot stop and children cannot cintinue to miss out on school as the war carries on for an eighth year.
Some children can not attend school because of displacement or due to the economic situation of their families. At times some school aged children are forced to leave school and help their families in securing a household income. Many, however, insist on continuing their education and attending their lessons even if they do not have school bags or supplies like other children.
The education program team at IhsanRD managed to fulfill the dreams of 10,641 students to obtain school bags that include notebooks, pens, and a complete set of stationery. Of course, most of the girls wanted the red and pink bags, while boys took the blue bags. But most importantly, they are happy and eager to continue their studies so that eventually they can have a role in rebuilding their society.
The teachers also got their share of supplies. 314 teachers in 20 schools supported by IhsanRD in Aleppo, Idlib and Daraa governorates all received teacher kits.
Investing in education and children’s development plays a crucial role. It is an investment in the future in which we depend on our children to be the builders of the society of tomorrow, equipped with knowledge and cooperation.
The war that has been threatening Syria’s children for seven years has not deterred many of them from going on the illuminated path of science, hoping for a successful future for them and for their societies. Such dreams are what IhsanRD commits itself to achieve through its work, not only for the relief of the Syrian people but also for the development of society and the capacity building of people.
The education program at IhsanRD promotes the educational process in Syria by supporting students and educational institutions as well as supporting teachers. Because the advancement of the education process is not limited only to support students, it’s also the successful teacher who builds students’ future.
During last month, the education team has conducted a TICC training for teachers (Teachers in Crises Context) in the schools supported by IhsanRD in Al-Atareb in western countryside of Aleppo, where 111 teachers participated in the training sessions. The training included the following topics:
1. Pedagogy and teaching methods.
2. Curriculum, lesson planning, and continuous evaluation.
3. The role, importance, and planning of teachers’ meetings.
4. Child protection and welfare.
5. The role of the teacher (rules of conduct and conflict resolution).
In a country that used to be bombed by warplanes every day, it was imperative for all people -young children and adults- to learn the fundamentals of dealing with disasters and training on security and safety measures that could be the difference between life and death at any moment.
Through its projects, IhsanRD seeks to save the lives and keep safety of both staff and beneficiaries, by taking the necessary measures to mitigate the risks and carry out periodic safety and security training.
Education Department at IhsanRD, in collaboration with the Syrian Civil Defense developed a safety and security plan, in addition to an evacuation plan in the schools supported by Ihsan Relief and Development in the western Aleppo countryside. Then a specialized trainer from the civil defense “White Helmets” has conducted the necessary training for both teaching staff and students to implement the safety and security plan properly.
The training included the evacuation plan in case schools are at risk, how to use fire extinguishers and ways to extinguish various fires. As well as the distribution of brochures describing the methods of shelter during the bombing and brochures about the remnants of the war of unexploded ordnance.
The trainings were held in 5 schools in the western Aleppo countryside, with 120 teachers and 3450 students.
In addition to safety and security training, IhsanRD provides its schools with safety equipment and fire extinguishers and check them periodically to ensure their effectiveness.
In order to raise the level of education and provide quality curriculums for students in schools supported by Ihsan for Relief and Development, Teachers Learning Circles in each school are periodically conducted. These circles aim to discuss the work of teachers within same class or same subject, exchange experiences, opinions and suggest improvements to raise performance level of all teachers and education quality. These meetings are part of the IhsanRD project to support of five schools in the western Aleppo countryside with 3250 students.
Protection Program within IhsanRD through the Case Management Team, seeks to provide appropriate growth opportunities for vulnerable children and reintegrate them into schools within the working areas of IhsanRD in Syria, which have recently witnessed a major trend of pushing children to work and dropping out of schools because of the need for income, and the lack of educational institutions in some areas.
IhsanRD team through the case management department aims to identify children who dropped out of education and reintegrate them into appropriate education within the formal or informal education process, ensuring their growth opportunities and strengthen family resources to gain some stability that provides educational growth opportunities for these children.
Last week, protection team in IhsanRD has reached 1000 children in Tqad, al-Sahhara and Armanaz (600 children in Tqad and al-Sahharah , 400 children in Armnaz) to reintegrate them into education again through the linking process and providing school kits containing stationery in addition to a curriculum suitable for the child’s age and educational level. This activity was carried out in cooperation with the Child Protection Network in the project’s areas, which IhsanRD believes in activating its work as local bodies close to the community and directly contribute to the promotion of child protection and protection of vulnerable groups within their regions, IhsanRD teams work closely with the Child Protection Network to support and reactivate its role after deterioration in the last years of the war and the harsh conditions experienced by the Syrian society.
The Case Management Department as a part of protection team in IhsanRD continues to monitor the stability of children in their schools and receive appropriate education.
PTC (Parents Teachers Committees) are committees that meet on a monthly basis in each school supported by IhsanRD. The committees consist of / representatives of the teachers, representatives of the parents, a representative of the educational society, a representative of the educational office, the field officer supervising the school /
Through these meetings, IhsanRD aims to involve community, parents and stakeholders in supporting the educational process by discussing the following topics in the meetings:
Develop security and safety plans in schools
Discuss the activities carried out in schools and identify weaknesses and gaps in implementation
Assist in planning activities to be carried out within the project
Highlighting problems in schools and students and helping to resolve them if possible