Primary and Secondary Education for Syrian Refugees

From 2017 until 2021 Wadi helped to support thousands of Syrian students and teachers in camps in Iraq to continue school.


The ongoing conflicts in the region have led to continuous waves of displaced persons from Syria and Southern Iraq seeking refuge in the KRI. This displacement and all the issues that come with it, have placed children and adolescents aged 6-17 at the highest risk of not starting or continuing their education.

Udpdate: Supporting Syrian Refugee Teachers

The reasons why these students are not being schooled, are as diverse as their circumstances. Some students left their schools because of the lack of transportation, others left because of the lack of governmental support for the schools in camps (due in part to the economic crisis in KRG-Iraq).

Those students who are in schools are suffering from low level of learning materials, poorly trained teachers and inadequate basic school supplies (notebooks, pens, books) which leads to poor performance and high drop out rates.

Since 2012 WADI has provided assistance for Syrian refugees in Iraqi-Kurdistan through a variety of projects addressing their many different needs. On Dec. 2015, WADI with the support of UNESCO implemented the project: Provision of Secondary Education for IDPs and Syrian Refugees in KRI, Iraq targeting more than 3000 IDPs and Syrian Refugee students for one year. That project successfully achieved its objectives and supported 3000 students.

In partnership with Jinda organization we implemented the program “Access to Quality Inclusive Primary and Secondary Education for Refugees and IDPs in Conflict Affected Areas of Iraq” under UNESCO supervision and European Union fund during the period 14 Aug 2017 – 15 Oct 2021. The project was focusing on implementing the project’s plan in the area of KRI, targeting Syrian Refugees in eight camps, and students of 15 primary and secondary schools.

During the four years of the project, Wadi in partnership with Jinda, and in coordination with UNESCO project team, has successfully over achieved all the project’s goals and milestones through implementing different activities in the targeted areas. The project team started the implementation by coordinating with MoE-KRG, GDoEs, Sub-DoEs, camp managements, and other stakeholders who are working with the education sector in the region. This coordination represented by conducting several meetings with all parties to discuss and identify the gaps, and the priority of the project activities. Wadi followed a methodological step to identify the gaps by conducting monthly assessments in the targeted location and analyze the obtained information, in order to reach high quality achievements.


In term of students, there were 74455 beneficiaries in total during the four years of the project, whom benefited from the core support that have been provided. These students were participated and supported through the activities implemented by Wadi in their schools such as:

  • Conducting four “Back to School” awareness campaign, re-enroll 1351 out of school students, facilitate the registration process during the four years of the project, printing and distributing textbooks for two academic years and reach 2939 students, providing stationery kits by the beginning of each academic year during the project period, providing daily transportation support, conducting vocational training, providing PSS/ sessions, supporting students through providing case management, conducting summer catch-up classes, and hiring teachers in eight Syrian refugees’ secondary schools to deliver the curricula.
  • Wadi through its activities reached 1059 teachers in all 15 targeted schools through implementing different activities such as, hiring and providing incentives in coordination with MoE-KRG, providing teachers learning materials, conducting three teachers’ trainings during the 4 years of the project, and providing transportation support for teachers in Sulaymaniyah in coordination with Khak company that volunteered to transfer nine teachers for free female teachers during the last three years. Thus, the targeted schools’ administrations received continues support from the project, this included providing the necessary administration materials monthly, providing WASH supplies, sanitization and cleaning materials, renovate/ rehabilitate/ expand the targeted schools. In addition, fixing and developing the electricity system in the schools.

In general, Wadi and its partners, with UNESCO team support, was able to build a strong relationship with the beneficiaries themselves, MoE-KRG, and different departments of education in the region. This supportive relationship is due to the high-quality implementation and performance that Wadi and its partners rely on it. In addition, Wadi through this project, covered the Syrian Refugees schools’ needs during 2017-2021 when most of the agencies withdraw from Syrian Refugees camps and transfer their funds to cover the liberated areas in Mosul, Anbar, and Salah Al-Din.

Thus, by the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemia, Wadi in coordination with its local partner Qubahan Organization for Development (QoD), designed a plan to continue the education process virtually by creating a specific Facebook’s groups/ pages for each targeted schools and invited students to join the virtual sessions. The plan was successfully achieved its targets all the Syrian Refugees students in the camps and the teachers were actively posted sessions according to the schools’ headmasters schedules.

Considering all of these, the presence of the project that represented by Wadi, its local partners (Jinda and QoD), UNESCO as a supervisor and EU as the donor, was effectively helped and reasoned the continuity of education for Syrian Refugees children, and raised the education quality for refugees.

Amar Yeyhaa, Wadi-Coordinator for education projects