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Displaying items by tag: refugees
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Wednesday, 04 February 2015 23:44

Kindergarten for Refugee children from Syria

Kindergarten for Refugee children from Syria

 

Refugee children from Syria of school age (6 years and up) joined either UNRWA schools (PRS) or public Lebanese schools (Syrian). Moreover,

some NGOs took in some of the refugee children

(aged from 4 to 6 years),but many of them were

not accommodated.

kinder21

 

In Beirut, PARD targeted 70 children (aged 4 to 6 years) through establishing a kindergarten for them.

This kindergarten is divided into 3 grades (KG1 for 4 years, KG2 for 5 years, KG3 for 6 years).

 

A team of 3 teachers, 3 teacher assistants, 1 coordinator,

1 psychosocial assistant, and a cleaning lady operate this KG.

The KG started in October 2012 till June 2013.

In July- August 2013, the same children joined

summer activities organized by PARD. The same

project restarted in September 2013 and will continue

until June 2014.

 

In addition to the activities in the KG, 65 children aged

from 7 till 12 years attended education support and

extra curriculum activities 5 days per week in the afternoons.

 

Besides, 6 puppet shows were conducted for the benefit of 120 attending children.



Published in Relief Project
Friday, 22 June 2012 10:12

Palestinians in Lebanon

Population demographics

 

Never was a census taken of Palestine refugees living in Lebanon. Only UNRWA’s registration system

gives some data but is inaccurate given the massive emigration of Palestinians. This survey allows for the first time to estimate accurately the total number of refugees living in Lebanon. Of the 455,000 refugees registered with UNRWA since 1948, only 260,000-280,000 currently reside in Lebanon. About a quarter live in Tyre, Saida and Beirut areas, one fifth in the North and 4% in the Beqaa. More than half of the refugee population lives in camps (62%) as compared to 38% living in gatherings, mainly in camp vicinity.

Based on the household survey results, 53% of refugees are women and the Palestine refugee population is young, with an average age of 30 years, and half of the population is younger than 25 year-old. The average household size is 4.5 members, compared to 4.2 for Lebanese households.

(Socio-Economic Survey of Palestine Refugees in Lebanon – December 2010)

 

Livelihoods

 

Many Palestinian workers are discouraged from working: 56% of refugees are jobless and only 37% of the working age population is employed. The Palestinian refugee labor force reaches 120,000, of which 53,000 are working. Joblessness among refugees has a strong gender dimension: Only 13% of women are employed compared to 65% of men. Those with a job are often in low status,casual and precarious employment. Our survey shows that 21% of employed refugees work in seasonal employment, and only 7% of those employed have a contract. Very few have a second job (3%) indicating the scarcityof even low quality employment. Most refugees have low qualifications: 6% of the Palestinian labor force has university training, compared to 20% for the Lebanese labor force. Though employment differs little across regions, quality of employment does. The share of those employed in low status elementary occupations is highest in Tyre while the share of high status

professionals and senior officials is highest in the North. Nearly a quarter of workers in Tyre are

employed in the agricultural sector and 87% of all agricultural workers live in Tyre. People working

in elementary occupations or the agricultural sector are more likely to belong to the working poor than

those working in other professions.

Survey results show that education can help refugees secure more and better jobs. A refugee with a

vocational or university degree is more likely to be employed than one holding a Brevet (officialdiploma qualifying entry into secondary) or lower. Moreover, of those with a university degree, 70% work as professionals or associated professionals, while those with a Brevet or less work mainly in crafts andelementary occupations. Employment rates for women who attended further education are also higher. Half of women with a university degree work and 43% of those with a vocational degree do.

Yet refugees till face many challenges in their educational attainment. Survey results show that 8% of

those between 7 and 15 years old were not at school in 2010. In addition to this, two thirds of xi

Palestinians above the age of 15 do not have Brevet, compared to a Lebanese rate of 50%. Only 50% of youths in Secondary school age (16-18 years old) are enrolled in education. Half of those live in the

South, though attendance varies significantly within regions. Education is central to improving

livelihoods among refugees, as household heads with Brevet or more are less likely to have poor or food insecure households. As for higher education, only 13% of refugees older than 18 have the

Baccalaureate or higher, compared to 17% for the Lebanese population.

(Socio-Economic Survey of Palestine Refugees in Lebanon – December 2010)

 

Around 422,000 refugees are registered with UNRWA in Lebanon, with many living in the country’s 12 refugee camps.

Palestine refugees make up an estimated ten per cent of Lebanon, a small country which is now densely populated.

Palestinian refugees in Lebanon do not enjoy several basic human rights, for example, they do not have the right to work in as many as 70 professions. Palestine refugees are not formally citizens of another state, so they are not able to claim the same rights as other foreigners living and working in Lebanon. Palestine refugees in Lebanon face a number of specific problems:

  • Lack of social and civil rights
  • No access to public social services
  • Very limited access to public health or educational facilities.

 

Most Palestinian refugees rely entirely on UNRWA as the sole provider of education, health and relief and social Health Conditions A third of the Palestine refugee population is estimated to have chronic illness and 4% a functional disability. Hypertension is particularly prevalent, which is cause for concern considering changing eating habits outlined above. This strongly affects poverty. All households with a disabled head of household live in extreme poverty. According to the Socio-Economic Survey of Palestinian Refugees in Lebanon conducted by the Amercian University in Beirut in 2010, The reported rate of chronic illness was significantly higher than that reported in older surveys. Previously the rate was at 19% (Ugland, 2003) whereas now our data depicts chronic illness rates at 31%.The difference in reporting may be a product of an aging Palestinian population, as demographic research has noted a precipitate decline in fertility rates among Palestinian refugees in Lebanon in the last few decades (Ugland 2003). Comparing the results to the Lebanese population, it is clear that Palestinian refugees have almost double the prevalence of chronic illnesses with 17% for the former and 31% for the latter (LNHS, 2004). The estimated prevalence of chronic illness among Palestine refugees is 31%. The types of chronic illness were diverse, and include hypertension (32%), back pain (9%), asthma (9%), diabetes (8%), rheumatism (6%), heart problems (4%), and epilepsy (3%).

Acute illnesses pose a particular risk for the Palestine refugee population, most of which live around the poverty line, since they often lead to extra-ordinary expenses and periods out of work. Considering that 95% of the population are without insurance and most of them in precarious employment, they are unlikely to receive indemnities or sick leaves, thus a case of acute illness may push a household into poverty. According to the Socio-Economic Survey of Palestinian Refugees in Lebanon conducted by the American University in Beirut in 2010 population wide, prevalence was high (24%), although this percentage gained precipitately among the older population. Among both the youngest and middle age group, 6 month prevalence was 23% and 22% respectively. The rate, however, was 36% among those 55 years and older, more than a 50% increase over the other age groups. The most common types of illnesses reported were cold/flu and other respiratory problems (36%), gastrointestinal (19%), musculoskeletal (9%), and urinary/reproductive problems (6%).

As for mental health, 21% stated that they experienced depression, anxiety or distress. Men reported better self-rated health scores than women. In general, women report a higher incidence of chronic and psychological disorders and lower self-rated health scores, while men are more likely to suffer functional disability.

 

Palestinians receive health services from a wide variety of care providers, though mainly from the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) , nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), and private clinics. Past studies on health care utilization have identified UNRWA as the primary provider of health services to Palestinian refugees in Lebanon. UNRWA provides primary health care services to refugees by way of 29 health centers located in areas with high densities of Palestinian refugees. The services provided by these centers include walk-in general consultations, maternal and child health care services, treatment of chronic diseases, and provision of medications. Many centers also have specialists, dental, and laboratory services available. UNRWA provides most secondary and limited tertiary care services to its constituents,   The PRCS and NGO health centers generally run health clinics focused on providing primary care, along with minimal curative care services. The primary difference between UNRWA and other health providers is that UNRWA provides medications to its patients. (Socio-Economic Survey of Palestinian Refugees in Lebanon conducted by the American University in Beirut in 2010)

Unsurprisingly, average out of pocket health care expenditure is highest for hospitalization. Households with a hospitalized family member spent on average US$614 over the last 6 months. Those with a doctor’s visits due to disability spent US$262, households with an acutely ill family member not requiring hospitalization spent US$ 164 and those with a chronic illness case US$137. Indeed the share of household expenditure on health jumps from 3% to 13% when a family member is chronically ill or disabled.

The refugees’ major concern is the cost of hospitalization. UNRWA provides basic primary healthcare, but is only able to cover the cost of secondary hospital care and partial tertiary care.

Since these costs are beyond the means of most refugees, they often face a choice between foregoing essential medical treatment and falling deeply into debt. Palestine refugees are subject to many employment restrictions that have left them highly dependent on UNRWA as their main relief provider and major employer. In 2005, officially registered Palestine refugees born in Lebanon were allowed by law to work in the clerical and administrative sectors for the first time. However, refugees are still unable to work in some professions, for example, as doctors, dentists, lawyers, engineers or accountants.

The refugee Palestinian workforce is substantially under-employed. Although many do find work, this is often seasonal or casual work for low wages and with no social and welfare benefits.

There are distinct signs that this situation is weakening the community's commitment to education. Many young people see no purpose in continuing their study. Some drop out and find manual work in order to support their families.

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