Fact Sheet: Syrian refugee children lack basic daily needs in Jordan


Published: 2018-02-27 18:34

Last Updated: 2024-04-17 13:28

Syrian refugee children lack basic needs in Jordan. (UNICEF/Twitter)
Syrian refugee children lack basic needs in Jordan. (UNICEF/Twitter)

A recently-released report by the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) revealed shocking facts about the daily living conditions Syrian refugee children face in host communities.

The UNICEF uncovered stories of Syrian families where parents skipped meals to allow their children to eat and families who were forced into negative coping mechanisms such as child labour and early marriage. Additionally, stories of families who were struggling to pay the rent, cover medical bills and school fees were told.

“With the unparalleled massive scale of the Syria crisis and its prolonged nature, Jordan needs continued support in order to manage the impact of this crisis and meet the needs of vulnerable children,” the UNICEF Representative in Jordan said.

Here are some of the facts mentioned in the UNICEF report:

  • 94 percent of Syrian children under 5 years old living in Jordan are “multidimensionally poor” which means they are deprived of minimum two of the basic needs; including education, health, water and sanitation, child protection and child safety.
  • 85 percent of registered Syrian refugee children are living below the poverty line.
  • 16 percent of Syrian children from 0-5 years do not have a birth certificate.
  • 4 out of 10 Syrian families are food insecure with an additional 26% vulnerable to becoming food insecure.
  • 45 percent of Syrian 0-5 year olds are not accessing proper health service.
  • 38 percent of Syrian children are not in school; because of distance, cost, lack of space and bullying as reasons for dropping out or not enrolling.
  • Child labour and violence continue to be key challenges for children aged 6-17 years.

UNICEF Jordan lacks the means to meet the needs of all vulnerable children and youth in 2018. They are working with the government, donors and partners to reduce the USD 145.7 million shortage and reduce poverty and other challenges among children enabling them to positively engage in their communities.

By the end of 2017, the overall number of registered and non registered refugees in Jordan reached 1.3 million. According to the the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), 21.3 percent of the registered refugees were living in refugee camps; 78,908 of them are living in Zaatari camp and 53,557 in Azraq camp. Around 516,000 of them are distributed in the urban areas of the kingdom.

During the seven-year war in the number of Syrians who were forced to leave their homes has gone over 11 million. They have mostly fled to Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq and Jordan, where they are facing a lack of sufficient food supplies and poor accommodation.