ARCS organized a camp for the refugee children from Syria, realizing the impact of the camp for their rehabilitation, integration and rest. The camp took place on 1-7thAugust, in the field near Stepanavan for 30 Armenian and refugee children. The project was implemented by the financial assistance of The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Armenia.
For about 15 years Armenian Red Cross Society has been implementing various programs directed at the needs of the refugee people from Azerbaijan, Iraq and nowadays from Syria. Amongst the most vulnerable of these people are children. The ARCS has identified several areas in which different forms of assistance could empower these vulnerable children to make positive changes to their lives. By working with these beneficiaries to develop their skills and resilience to their environment, we hope to reduce their helplessness and isolation. Since 2003, in two dormitories of Yerevan, where refugee families live, a project called “Smiley club” has been operated, offering psycho-social, educational and cultural activities of a large scale.
Among these activities, a special attention is given to the summer tent camps for these vulnerable children (aged 7-14). The camp aims at supporting the integration of the children into the society and contributes to the development of the feeling as of the full members of their communities responding to the educational needs of the children and promoting their comprehensive development. Sport activities, environment and healthy nutrition always make the main topics of the camps. Much attention is also paid on the cognitive activities about Armenia’s nature and sights.
Currently, as a result of the Civic War in Syria, there are many newcomer refugee children from the cities of Syria (Armenian by origin) who are in need of psycho-social support and rehabilitation. Generally they receive proper basic education in the country of origin due to war and have difficulties in continuing studying in Armenia (language difficulties, educational system and cultural differences, difficulties in integrating into local community).