The European Union is to provide additional 90 million euros from the EU Regional Trust Fund to address the humanitarian crisis in Syria. The money will be used by UNICEF to provide critical services and support to refugee and host community children and young people in Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan. The main focus will, however, be to bring refugee children back to school. The new batch of financial support was signed yesterday (19 September) by EU Commissioner Johannes Hahn and UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake. This brings the EU’s total contribution to UNICEF’s work on Syria to almost 200 million euro.
“I cannot stress enough the importance of promoting and providing access to quality education for children and young people in all countries affected by the Syrian crisis”, said Johannes Hahn, EU Commissioner for European Neighborhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations during the signing ceremony. “This is about creating hope, and doing what we can to ensure there is no ‘lost generation’. Thanks to our EU-UNICEF cooperation children in Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey are able to go to school and have access to safe spaces for non-formal education, protection and psycho-social care”.
The Syrian conflict is now in its seventh year and about 2 million children live in refugee camps in Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey. The EU’s Regional Trust Fund in Response to the Syrian Crisis reinforces the bloc’s integrated aid response and primarily addresses longer-term resilience and early recovery needs of Syrian refugees and overstretched host communities. The current overall volume of the EU Trust Fund is €1.3 billion, with contributions from 22 EU member states, the EU and Turkey.