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A major progress on asylum-seekers children learning has been made through the project funded by EU Service for Foreign Policy Instruments within the project Addressing COVID-19 Challenges within the Migrant and Refugee Response in the Western Balkans. School materials have been provided for children such as: notebooks, dictionaries, the equipment needed for online learning: personal computers and TV screens.

Prishtinë/ Priština, 24 July 2020

Her eyes are full of joy when she opens her notebook and shares with us what she learned. Asra*, seven year old, never had the opportunity to go to school in her home country, in Syria.

“I can barely wait for the time to go to classes to come, and when it’s over, I can barely wait for tomorrow”, she said.

Asra and her family have been in the Asylum Centre in Magura, Lipjan/ Lipljan municipality for five months. Her mother always wanted her to be a doctor but being an asylum-seeker makes that journey much harder.

“When we left Syria, I knew that education would be very hard for my daughter. At some point I thought that she would never be able to go to school…my heart was broken and my dream seemed impossible.”

Children learning has been made possible with the help of EU funds

While staying in the Asylum Centre, Asra took the first step into fulfilling her mother’s dream. There, she started the first grade and for more than two months she has been learning about all the subjects as other children in Kosovo.

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and its partner organization Kosovo Rehabilitation Centre for Torture Victims (KRCT), have been engaged in asylum seeker’s education.

A major progress on asylum-seekers children learning has been made through the project funded by EU Service for Foreign Policy Instruments within the project Addressing COVID-19 Challenges within the Migrant and Refugee Response in the Western Balkans. School materials have been provided for children such as: notebooks, dictionaries, the equipment needed for online learning: personal computers and TV screens.

Asra’s mother tells us how happy she is for her. She hopes that her two younger children will be able to enrol in education when the time comes.

As per the new first-grader, she is especially excited when it comes to learning math and Albanian.

I want to be a teacher when I grow up

Same as Asra, other asylum-seekers children are attending classes in the Asylum Centre. They range from the first grade to the seventh. Due to COVID-19, currently they are catching up with online learning.

The conditions in the Asylum Centre are great. They have rooms to hold their classes, a library and an assistant who helps them with their homework and translation.

All the children there are very happy for this opportunity.

A seven-grader tells us how he’s using his free time to help his younger friends with their homework.

“Whenever I see them doing homework, I always help them because that is stuff that I already know. I want to be a teacher when I grow up because that way I can help people even more.”

Children in the Asylum Centre are planning to start attending public schools in September. Individual and group classes are being held every day in order to catch up with their peers.

Education is also reflected on the well-being of these young people. Having a study routine and making new friends helps them deal with the hardships that they encounter in their country of origin and during their journey for a better life.

Today, children with many dreams find themselves in need for help to fulfill them. When going to school is the path, we at UNHCR make sure to grant them their fundamental right to access education.

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