Investing in the future: Questscope mentor talks to UNHCR about youth in the Middle East

"Youth are the spirit of life. They determine how developed or underdeveloped a nation is and are the key criteria in any community." (Zaher, Questscope Mentor Coordinator, Zaatari Camp)

Zaher is from the city of Daraa in Syria. At 25, his past is full of accomplishments: he has a bachelor's degree in history and education, and worked in Syria as a teacher. His future is full of dreams: to pursue a PhD, get married and have children. But when he came to Jordan's Zaatari refugee camp with his family, his view of the future took on a different shape. Now, he works for...MORE

Breaking the Cycle of Violence

The violence of war marks her short life. Marwa was born 15 years ago as a Palestinian in a refugee camp in Syria. There she had friends and could go to school.

War changed everything.

She is an orphan now, and a second-time refugee.  She watched as her parents were killed. Now, she watches her only surviving uncle struggle to feed 12 children. This is dangerous for Marwa. She fears that anything can happen to her.

The violence of war is brutal. It destroys and leaves ongoing...MORE

150 Syrian youth connected with mentors in Zaatari

“When we first met the boys, there was a lot of tension between them. They displayed verbal and even physical abuse against their peers.” (Farid, Questscope Syrian Mentor in the Zaatari refugee camp)

Syrian refugee youth have experienced trauma that most of us could never imagine. When the Syrian war first started, many witnessed the death of a family member or the destruction of their home. Now, as refugees, they experience trauma of a different kind. Most haven’t attended school in over 2 years. They are isolated, so they cling to anyone and anything around them to feel...MORE

Behind the Scenes: Music for Zaatari

In the spring, Questscope hosted communications workshops in Jordan’s Zaatari refugee camp through the MeWe Syria initiative. Our Syrian mentors and case coordinators learned about video production as a way to use communication to break down barriers and share the stories of triumph, resilience and hope that they see happening around them.

Fast forward to summer, when Questscope partnered with Music for Life International for a unique...MORE

Questscope at Regional Conference Dedicated to Protection of Refugee Children

Questscope’s Muthanna Khriesat, Jordan Country Director, and Mike Niconchuk, Emergency Response Coordinator, will participate this week in the first regional conference dedicated to the protection of refugee children and youth. The conference, “Investing in the Future: Protecting Refugee Children in the Middle East and North Africa,” will be held October 15th and 16th in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, and is hosted by the UNHCR, in partnership with...MORE

One month later: Music in Za'atari

One month ago, Questscope hosted a music residency program in the Za'atari refugee camp in partnership with Music for Life International. The three-day residency program brought together Syrian mentors, youth, members of the Za'atari security directorate and elders from the community, who together enjoyed performances led by the "Za'atari String Quartet" - four distinguished musicians from around the world. Music education courses were also held after each performance, creating space for young Syrian refugees to explore creative expression and the power of music to heal and build...MORE

Back to School?

Approximately 98 percent of children in the United States stood on the curbside waiting for the school bus this year.

There’s the five-year-old girl starting kindergarten. She takes that first step onto the bus, with dreams of becoming a teacher. Her future holds endless opportunity.

There’s the mother that watches her. As her daughter takes that first step onto the bus, she beams with pride thinking of her future. What will she learn? Who will she become?

Four years ago, mothers and...MORE

Informal Education: A stepping stone for a bright future

“I want to go back to my home, my games and to my bed.”

The words of Nabil, a 12-year-old Syrian refugee, tell the story of a life abruptly interrupted.

Nabil fled his home with his mother, father and four siblings three years after the outbreak of conflict in Syria. His eyes fixed on the past and feet planted in the emptiness of the present—it seemed impossible for him to walk forward.

Whatever hope he might have felt upon escaping their war-torn homeland was quickly crushed upon arriving in Jordan’s Zaatari camp. The bed Nabil used to sleep on in his home...MORE

Music in Zaatari: Building Community, Creating Opportunity

"The point is, art never stopped a war and never got anybody a job. That was never its function. Art cannot change events. But it can change people. It can affect people so that they are changed because people are changed by art—enriched, ennobled, encouraged—they then act in a way that may affect the course of events, by the way they vote, the way they behave, the way they think."

- Leonard Bernstein

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UNOCHA report on Questscope mentoring program in Zaatari

In partnership with UNOCHA, Questcope recently completed a pilot mentoring program for youth at risk of violent behavior in Jordan's Za'atari refugee camp. UNOCHA recently reported on the program in the July update for the Syria Emergency Response Fund. The full report is available here

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