The Lost Do Not Have To Be Forgotten By Rachel Leva

In a time of fear and dismay, hopeful kids running around their neighborhood and going to school became a lost generation to be forgotten. Their talents are no longer present, their hope is all lost, and their future is unknown. The chance to thrive and make something of themselves is destroyed and the country once called home is now a nightmare they fear. Bombings, gun shots, and the crumbling of buildings is being exposed as a familiar event to children of young ages. Families are being torn apart as some are lucky enough to flee while others are sent to die. Being forced out of the place filled with prized possessions, memories, and safety leaves a mark on the heart, where home is no longer a place, but a treacherous memory of the past. If captured and taken, children will be forced to be child soldiers, seeing the horrors of murder and torture right before their very eyes. The children who were once laughing in the streets on their way to school have become petrified at the terrors no person should see in a lifetime. A government filled with corruption and a terrorist group attacking the country has put Syria’s refugees into a hole. They need our help more then ever now, rebuilding a stable nation to give kids another chance at a normal childhood and the chance to thrive as adults someday, starting with being provided with an education.

Photo taken off of Google Images

In a TED Talk by Melissa Fleming, she brings up the fact that “And most troubling of all is that only 20 percent of Syrian refugee children are in school in Lebanon.” The refugees are at a standstill, facing uncertainty of the day's ahead of them, but one thing that can help them succeed in life is having an education. Refugee camps need to be suited with proper schooling so that kids can have an education under their circumstances. Majority of the child refugees care about their education and want to be in school. However, according to an article entitled “Growing Up Without an Education’ by the Human Rights Watch, states that “ of August 2015, less than 3 percent enrolled in public secondary school during the 2015-2016 school year.” The article goes on to discuss how education is fundamental in shaping who these children are, and how families will go through any measure to make sure their children are getting a proper education, including moving closer to schools that may let their children enroll. A nine year old girl in Lebanon who was unable to be enrolled in school even set up blackboards in her backyard to teach the other refugees in the camp from what little education she remembered from her previous schooling years.

These children would do anything humanly possible to receive a proper education and deserve the right to have one, especially considering their predicament. We should not be dragging the hope of these children farther down by not providing them any education, but instead bring their hopes up in seeing that they can have a stable future if we help them get started. The chance to prosper and find a passion is no longer available to most. The public schools that are opened now for refugees need to be in areas where the refugees are fleeing and be equipped with the proper teaching tools and safety standards. We need to hire more teachers and fully invest in a quality education in order to start a chain reaction of relief.

The truth of the matter being that the children know the slim chances of being able to see a classroom again, but would do anything to have the opportunity. The funding to provide education to these refugees is scarce, some may say they are doing all in their power to help. Filippo Grandi, a United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees states, “We recognize and applaud the donations made so far, but the simple truth is that funding isn't keeping up with needs.” However, all people can help in this tragedy. Many believe that it is out of their reach to help these refugees, and that a small donation cannot make change. This is just the opposite for this crisis. Any amount of donation can count, if it means getting one small step closer to providing some form of relief and education to some refugees. A big goal as it may seem doesn't have to be this large of the world steps in to take refugees in, find scholarships for them and give them a true education whether that is in a refugee camp or in an actual safe country. Many may think that providing an education for these children is useless due to the lack of knowing what the future will bring for them. However, if we can provide an education for them, we can steer them to make the right decisions and allow them to make something of themselves. The world always needs more entrepreneurs, astronauts, engineers, and teachers, so why not provide the first steps for these refugees?

After all, according to CNN, there are 28 children refugees and at least 20 million of them have left there homes in search of a better life, including getting a proper education. With millions of children being uneducated, this is where the lost generation comes into effect. These refugees will become forgotten and their skills will not be utilized to the greatest effect, but instead they will live a short life wasted on not following their passions. These children need to be educated so that they thrive in school, find what they're love is and pursue it. The world needs to provide relief to these children for them to not be a forgotten generation whose talents were lost. The lost generation does not have to be forgotten.


Created with images by Cluster Munition Coalition - "Working with children in Domiz refugee camp for Syrian regees © Sean Sutton/CMC/MAG" • DFID - UK Department for International Development - "Refugee children from Syria at a clinic in Ramtha, northern Jordan" • DFID - UK Department for International Development - "Sarah: I cannot not go to school" • DFID - UK Department for International Development - "Getting Syria's children back to school in Lebanon"

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