Roadblocks, conflict zones and other obstructions prevent so many Palestinian students from getting to class on time. Many children have to trek along dangerous roads, for long distances—dodging cars and political violence—just to get to school.
The Askar camp in Nablus in Palestine experienced a major growth spurt as residents from surrounding areas were forced to move into the site after the six-day war in 1967. High prices, overcrowding and pollution have all contributed to the very difficult, impoverished living conditions for the people in the area. During the second Intifada, Nablus was cut off from surrounding areas, and students were especially affected by new restrictions that kept them from getting to work and school in the city.
In the Askar camp, mobility restrictions made the boys’ daily walk to school difficult and dangerous. If they were able to make it to class, many were too tired to focus on their studies, and often they showed up late, or had to leave early to avoid safety issues on the way home. Many even skipped school altogether because getting to school became too dangerous and too much of a burden.
That’s why Islamic Relief USA, together with the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), worked to build and equip a new Askar boys’ school that was closer to home. The school serves more than 500 boys in grades one through nine, with classrooms, locker rooms, a clinic, recreation areas and more.
Instead of dropping out, now the Askar boys are enrolling and attending regularly said principal Rashid.
“Class sizes are now increasing,” he said. “The boys also come here during the summer to socialize and gather with their friends. They like to be here.”
Ahmad is a 12-year-old student about to enter the sixth grade at the school, “I have hope for the future,” he said.
Young Palestinians in the Askar refugee camp and elsewhere urgently need hope and a sense that there is a future. With your generous donations, Islamic Relief USA can continue to build schools and other strong community centers that help benefit impoverished communities now and well into the future. Your donations will help support Islamic Relief USA projects in Palestine like the Askar boys’ school.
Your donations help to support educational programs for Palestinians like Ahmad so that they can provide for themselves.