Self-learning programme helps children catch up on education

UNICEF supports 14,250 out-of-school children through the self-learning programme. Thanks to ECHO.

UNICEF
teacher and students in classroom
UNICEF/Syria/2020/Antwan Chnkdji
20 October 2020

Over nine years of conflict have taken a toll on children’s education across Syria. Violence, displacement and depletion of financial resources have forced many children to drop out of school to work and support their families.

In Aleppo, thanks to a generous contribution from the European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO), UNICEF supports 14,250 out-of-school children through the self-learning programme. The programme is especially designed to help children who cannot physically attend school due to violence, displacement or work, to study at home or in community centres with the help of caregivers or volunteers.

“The self -learning programme gives children a chance to continue their learning and hope for a better future,” says Yasser Hemidy, UNICEF Education Officer in Aleppo. “The programme also offers inclusive learning opportunities for all children, including those with disabilities,” he adds.

Two students in a classroom
UNICEF/Syria/2020/Antwan Chnkdji
A self-learning class for out-of-school children in a UNICEF-supported centre in Aqoul neighbourhood in Aleppo city.
student raising hand in classroom
UNICEF/Syria/2020/Antwan Chnkdji
Mohammad, 12, dropped out of school in Grade 3 to help his family put bread on the table, working shifts of 11 hours daily. A few weeks ago, he decided to continue his learning. “The first step is for me to join the UNICEF-supported centre; the self-learning programme allows me to catch-up on everything I had missed, so that I can eventually catch-up with my friends and re-enroll in school,” says Mohammad.
students in classroom
UNICEF/Syria/2020/Antwan Chnkdji
“I was forced to drop out after my school was destroyed in fighting,” says Rajab, 14. Rajab and his family fled their home five years ago, when a shell hit their house and injured his little brother. Throughout their displacement, Rajab worked long shifts at a sewing workshop, to help support his family. Now that they have returned to Aleppo, Rajab signed up for the UNICEF-supported self-learning programme in Aqoul neighbourhood, Aleppo city.
teacher talking to student in classroom
UNICEF/Syria/2020/Antwan Chnkdji
Due to a cognitive disability, Mahmoud, 11, had never been to school. This year, Mahmoud signed up for the UNICEF-supported self-learning programme in Aqoul neighbourhood in Aleppo city. Both the centre and the programme offer inclusive learning opportunities for all children, to reach their full potential in life.
student with disability standing in classroom
UNICEF/Syria/2020/Antwan Chnkdji
“If I don’t study, I will never achieve my dream of becoming an astronaut!” says Ahmad, 14 who was born with perinatal hypoxia, leaving him unable to walk or go to school. This year, as he learned to walk independently, Ahmad decided to follow his dream and signed up for the UNICEF-supported self-learning programme in Aqoul neighbourhood in Aleppo city. The programme provides children with disability with inclusive learning opportunities to reach their full potential in life.