Philanthropist launches education fund to help 5000 young refugees

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The Syrian conflict has left two million children out of school in the region (Education Above All)

Children in conflicts, Education funding, Refugees and internally displaced people, Right to education

The $27 million initiative will support adolescents in Jordan and Lebanon, as well as Arab children in the UAE affected by humanitarian emergencies.

At least 5000 refugee children and youth will have their education supported by funding from a philanthropist.

Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair has launched a $27 million initiative that will help refugee adolescents in Jordan and Lebanon – and Arab children living temporarily in the United Arab Emirates who have been affected by wars and disasters.

The Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair Refugee Education Fund will run for three years.

The Emirati businessman said: “I believe that philanthropists have a role in helping to support one of the most acute challenges of our region – lack of education opportunities for young people who need it the most. 

“Young people whose education has been interrupted by conflict deserve a chance to rebuild their lives and have a shot at a good future.”

The fund will support high-impact education programmes at secondary, vocational and tertiary levels in Jordan and Lebanon. Grants will also support children of families forced to move to the UAE by humanitarian emergencies who cannot afford school fees.  

Uae Philanthropist Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair

Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair

Chairman of the Abdulla Al Ghurair Foundation for Education, which will administer the new refugee education fund. His father's foundation was launched in 2015 and aims to reach 15,000 youth over 10 years via secondary and higher education programmes and scholarships valued at over $1 billion.

A first round of grants to partner organisations in Jordan, Lebanon and the UAE will be announced before the start of the new school year.

The Syrian conflict has left two million children out of school in the region. Hundreds of thousands of refugee children in Lebanon and Jordan are not getting an education – despite a promise by world leaders last year that they would all be in school by now.

The initiative – launched yesterday on World Refugee Day – was welcomed by Filippo Grandi, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, and Gordon Brown, the UN Special Envoy for Global Education.

Grandi said: “The fund highlights the importance of the Arab world’s business community in creating a positive impact through supporting the region’s displaced communities.”

Brown said: “There can be no better investment in the future of the Arab region than to support the education of the most vulnerable – refugee children and youth.”

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