• UNICEF conducted a five-day training on Adolescent and Youth Resilience to support the provision of quality psychosocial support services for children and youth between age 14 and 20.
• UNICEF, in collaboration with Ministry of National Education (MoNE), completed the first phase of the “Promoting Gender Equality in Education (PGEE)” programme producing a gender-sensitive and gender-specific activity booklet for 9th and 10th grade students and raising school standards for gender-equality.
• In January, 311,926 refugee children received a conditional cash transfer for education (CCTE) payment for attending school regularly in preceding months – nearly a 60 per cent increase in beneficiaries over the previous payment in November 2017.
SITUATION IN NUMBERS
# of children affected out of
# of people affected
UNICEF 2018 Appeals
US$ 229.2 million
Situation Overview & Humanitarian Needs
In 2018, Turkey remains home to the largest refugee population in the world. As of the end of January 2018, almost 3.9 million refugees and asylum-seekers were registered in Turkey, 1.6 million of whom were children. More than 3.5 million Syrians – including over 1.5 million children – were under temporary protection in Turkey, in addition to nearly 365,000 refugees mainly from Afghanistan, Iraq and Iran, of whom some 120,000 were children.
In January 2018, a total of 1,640 refugees and migrants were rescued or intercepted at sea, according to data from the Turkish Coast Guard (TCG), which represents a slight increase in comparison to December 2017 (1,442 refugees and migrants). In addition, 378 refugees and migrants have been apprehended on land as a result of joint operations with TCG and Gendarmerie in January 2018. Under the framework of the EU-Turkey Statement, a total of three rounds of returns took place for 47 people in January. This brings the total number of returns to 1,531 since March 2016. The vast majority (91%) of returned people were men, predominantly from South Asia and North Africa, with children and women making up 5% and 9%, respectively.
After years of displacement, refugee children and families in Turkey remain extremely vulnerable. According to recent assessments, nearly 67 per cent of Syrian refuges live below the poverty line and many in shelters with insufficient water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) facilities and inadequate protection against poor weather.
In addition, it is estimated that over 350,000 Syrian children remain out of school and face challenges such as lack of awareness about available services, language barriers, socio-economic obstacles, and dropout at the secondary school level. Refugee and migrant children – particularly those out of school – remain vulnerable to numerous protection risks, including isolation, discrimination, and different forms of exploitation. Years of conflict and displacement continue to have a significant impact on their psychosocial well-being which, if not addressed, will have a long-term negative impact on their development. Moreover, many vulnerable families struggling to meet their basic needs are increasingly resorting to negative coping mechanisms such as engaging in child labour and child marriage, instead of sending their children to school.
The scale of the crisis continues to place enormous strains on the country’s basic services and infrastructure – particularly in host communities, where 93 per cent of refugees reside. Together with the government and other partners on the ground, UNICEF in 2018 continues to focus its efforts to provide them with a better future, and help prevent the loss of a generation of refugee children in Turkey.