Behind the Headlines: Inside the Lives of Syrian Refugee Girls and Women

By Dan Baker

May 16, 2016

Every time you ‘like’ and share this post, Johnson & Johnson will donate $1 (per social action), up to $350,000, via the Global Moms Relay, to help improve the health and well-being of families worldwide in support of Shot@Life, Girl Up, Peace Corps Let Girls Learn Fund, UNICEF USA and Nothing But Nets. More below!

For the United Nations, Syria is the biggest humanitarian crisis today. As it enters its fifth year, the humanitarian impact in and around Syria remains overwhelming. It has placed 12.2 million people in need of aid, internally displaced 7.6 million people and caused 3.9 million Syrians to flee to neighboring countries.

Among the affected population in Syria and refugees in the region, four million women and girls of child-bearing age need special attention. This includes nearly half a million pregnant women in Syria alone, in addition to the estimated 70,000 currently pregnant refugee women and girls from Syria. Those numbers are hard to grasp. The realities of what women and girls fleeing the crisis are experiencing, are best shown through their own stories.

These Syrian girls are not enrolled in a school. They spend their days playing and supporting their mother in household work.

These Syrian girls are not enrolled in a school. They spend their days playing and supporting their mother in household work.

[ Photo 1408 ] A Syrian girl participating in a computer class at a UNFPA-supported community center in Salinurfa, Turkey.

A Syrian girl participating in a computer class at a UNFPA-supported community center in Salinurfa, Turkey.

Syrian refugees participating in a class on domestic violence and law in the Kawergosk camp in the Kurdistan region of Iraq.

Syrian refugees participate in a class on domestic violence and law in the Kawergosk camp in the Kurdistan region of Iraq.

A Syrian woman sitting in her home in Salinurfa, Turkey. She was approached by social worker and is now participating in a Turkish language course through a UNFPA-supported community center.

A Syrian woman sits in her home in Salinurfa, Turkey. She was approached by social worker and is now participating in a Turkish language course through a UNFPA-supported community center.

A Syrian family lives in unfinished garage in Tripoli, Lebanon.

A Syrian family hangs their clothes outside their home, an unfinished garage in Tripoli, Lebanon.

Syrian women standing in a line to receive needed medication and contraceptive pills from the reproductive health clinic in the UNFPA-supported women safe space in the Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan.

Syrian women standing in a line to receive needed medication and contraceptive pills from the reproductive health clinic in the UNFPA-supported women safe space in the Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan.

A triple birth in the one of the UNFPA supported health facilities in the southern part of Syria, resourced through a cross-border operation from Jordan.

A triple birth in the one of the UNFPA supported health facilities in the southern part of Syria, resourced through a cross-border operation from Jordan.

 Baby Rima was the 5,000th baby born in the Za’taari refugee camp in Jordan, and named after Dr. Rima Diab. Dr Diab delivered the child at the UNFPA supported comprehensive girls and women clinic in the camp. In the three years the clinic has been operating with UNFPA support, not a single mother has died there.

Baby Rima was the 5,000th baby born in the Za’taari refugee camp in Jordan, and named after Dr. Rima Diab. Dr Diab delivered the child at the UNFPA supported comprehensive girls and women clinic in the camp. In the three years the clinic has been operating with UNFPA support, not a single mother has died.

An overhead picture of the Domiz refugee camp in the Kurdistan region of Iraq.

An overhead picture of the Domiz refugee camp in the Kurdistan region of Iraq.

A group of Syrian girls at a women and girls women center in the Domiz camp. They have been attending different courses supported by UNFPA.

A group of Syrian girls at a women and girls women center in the Domiz camp. They have been attending different courses supported by UNFPA.

Learn more about UNFPA’s mission to help women and children in refugee camps, and how you can help, by watching Dan Baker’s keynote address at the Moms +SocialGood event.

All photos by David Brunetti for UNFPA except photo of baby Rima and family, by Rachel Moynihan for UNFPA. Lead photo of Syrian women participating in a hair-dressing and make-up course in the Domiz camp.


You share, they give: Each time you ‘like’ or share this post via the social media icons on this post, or comment below, Johnson & Johnson will donate $1 (per action) up to $350,000 to Shot@Life, Girl Up, Peace Corps Let Girls Learn Fund, U.S. Fund for UNICEF and Nothing But Nets.

The Global Moms Relay was created by the United Nations Foundation and Johnson & Johnson with support from BabyCenter, Global Citizen and Fatherly, to help improve the lives of families around the globe. Share this post with the hashtags #GlobalMom and #JNJ, and visit GlobalMomsRelay.org to learn more.

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