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The former Director of the RSC talks to Ideas for Development

Ideas for Development have this week published an interview with Emeritus Professor Dawn Chatty about the Syrian refugee crisis. The interview covered a variety of aspects of the crisis but most notably the need to provide education for young refugees. When asked what would be her recommendation to Western governments, she said “It is vital that we find a way to provide education to refugees, who have been out of school for five years, so that they can return to build a new Syria from a different perspective... When a wave of Iraqi refugees flocked to Syria between 2006 and 2007, the authorities did not authorize many NGOs to come to the country and insisted that foreign aid went directly to Syrian structures, so that the refugees could go to the country’s schools and hospitals. As a result, the Iraqis were well educated and have not become a problematic group in Syria, where they have become integrated.”

Professor Chatty further noted that families are sending their young boys to Europe to escape from Islamic radicalization. This, she says, presents “a golden opportunity that we really need to become aware of in Europe. Even if we only educate 200,000 of these young people and introduce them to the Western way of thinking, they will later be able to go home and rebuild their country in a different spirit.”

Read the full interview here: The education of young refugees in Europe: A golden opportunity

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The Syrian humanitarian disaster: disparities in perceptions, aspirations, and behaviour in Lebanon, Jordan, and Turkey Publications

Ensuring quality education for young refugees from Syria (12-25 years): a mapping exercise (summary) Publications

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