The first school opens in Ein Issa camp, north of Raqqa

In northern Syria, the first school for displaced people has opened in the Ein Issa camp. Located north of Raqqa, Ein Issa was the focal point of the Syrian Democratic Forces’ (SDF) operations and it is also the site of thousands of people who have been displaced as a result of the conflict against ISIS.

However, due to the destruction prevalent in Raqqa, many are waiting to return to the city. Although reconstruction efforts, including de-mining homes and removing rubble from streets, have already begun, it is likely to be months before large sections of the population can go back.

For this reason, the Syrian Democratic Council in coordination with the Raqqa Civilian Council, which oversees administrative duty of Raqqa City, have set up a school to rehabilitate and educate displaced children despite the difficult conditions experienced in the region.

According to the head of the school, Muhannad Ahmed al-Awad, the number of students in the school, which consists of four tents each housing four classes, fluctuates between 400 and 500 young boys and girls. But for Muhannad, this is a way of diverting children’s attention away from the violent past and their difficult surroundings.

Another volunteer, Ali Mohammed al-Hasan, says that the return to education for these young children are bringing a smile back on their faces.

“We opened the school for students who have suffered five years of a lack of education and to draw happiness and joy on their faces,” said al-Hasan.

And despite the camp’s limited resources, it is hoped that the education will help the kids turn the page on ISIS and provide a brighter future for the people of Raqqa.