Since the start of the Syria crisis in 2011, millions of Syrian children and young people have sought refuge in neighbouring Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey. It is estimated that around 50 per cent do not attend school. Host governments and other stakeholders see non-formal learning as an alternative way of providing them with the knowledge and skills they need to thrive and survive following displacement. But they also face a significant challenge in creating systems that recognise both the non-formal learning of Syrian refugees and the learning, qualifications and life experience they acquired in their home country.
A new UIL publication, Pathways to empowerment: Recognizing the competences of Syrian refugees in Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey, stresses the importance of viewing recognition, validation and accreditation (RVA) systems for Syrian refugees as part of comprehensive national strategies of host governments rather than as fragmented and ad hoc projects. For children, youth and young adults who have had their education interrupted, recognition of non-formal learning and competences becomes a tool of empowerment vital for the possibility of re-entering the education system, integrating into the world of work, and living with freedom and agency.
While regional policy-makers have prioritized the issue of RVA mechanisms for non-formal and informal learning, effective, comprehensive systems still do not exist. Pathways to empowerment recommends that RVA systems be integrated into host countries’ education, training and qualifications reforms, rather than being treated as stand-alone measures.
The book’s recommendations are relevant to countries in other parts of the world where the recognition of refugees’ non-formal learning and competences remains ambiguous.
The study is the result of a collaboration between UIL and the UNESCO Beirut Office and Regional Bureau for Education in the Arab States. UIL and the UNESCO Beirut Office will facilitate a policy dialogue between national authorities, social partners and sectoral stakeholder at a conference to be held in Beirut in July 2018. The objective will be to develop an action plan to recognize formal, non-formal and informal learning of Syrian refugees in their host countries.
- Author/Editor: Madhu Singh; Hegazi Idris; Maysoun Chehab
- Pathways to empowerment: Recognizing the competences of Syrian refugees in Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey
- UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning, 2018
- ISBN 978-92-820-1227-7
- Available in: English