Amir Manghali, Regional Desk Coordinator for East Africa, discusses Islamic Relief’s work to give hope to displaced children in Somalia.

Recurrent drought and ongoing conflict has forced many families in Somalia from their homes. According to the UN, more than 1.1 million people are currently displaced in the country, and almost one million more are living as refugees in neighbouring countries.

A class is delivered outside in a camp on the outskirts of Mogadishu.

A class is delivered outside in a camp on the outskirts of Mogadishu.

Some children will never go to school

With displaced families amongst the most vulnerable, it is critical that both they and host communities have access to basic services – including education. Yet in camps around the country, education is far below even minimum standards. Resources and facilities are inadequate. Some children will not see inside a classroom for the duration of their school-years.

In an effort to provide safe learning spaces, Islamic Relief has set up eight Children’s Learning Centres in camps around Mogadishu. Here, despite the challenges, volunteer teachers exhibit real determination and commitment to provide the best education possible.

“Sitting on sand is hot and dirty,” said Abdi, a volunteer teacher. “If learning shelters are built, learning would sink into the minds of children.”

Islamic Relief is improving access to education

A volunteer speaks with the children.

A volunteer speaks with the children.

We support the volunteers by paying them incentives for their life-changing work, delivering training to improve the quality of education, and empowering parents to safeguard quality teaching. The project is funded by Islamic Relief Netherlands and Islamic Relief Belgium.

Mothers often leave small babies with their daughters as they walk up to eight kilometers to central Mogadishu in search of food. So, it is encouraging to see how many young girls attend school in the camps.

With your support, Islamic Relief will continue to help vulnerable children to access the opportunities of education. The children represent the hope of a better Somalia. They are a generation worth supporting.