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Assessment on the Situation of Iraqi Refugees in Syria

The aim of this report is to assess the situation of Iraqi refugees in Syria by estimating the size and nature of the Iraqi refugee population in Syria, by determining the refugees' needs, in terms of health, education, nutrition, protection and access to food; by identifying capacities and needs of existing and potential partners and by providing recommendations for future interventions. The report is based on a household survey, focus groups and interviews conducted in the areas most populated by Iraqi refugees. The paper starts with a profile of the Iraqi refugee population in Syria in terms of family, ethnicity, religion, age and marital status. For example, the results of survey demonstrate that nearly half of the Iraqi refugee population is under 18 years old and the average of breadwinning by age amounts to 59.7 percent. In the case of housing and employment, the report shows many families are not suitably provided for. Employed Iraqi refugees are extremely vulnerable due to the limited legal protection and due to largely of informal nature of business in the country. Nevertheless, in relation to food, income and expenditure, the data reveals food consumption is adequate in the majority of households. Turning to educational opportunities for refugee children, the report shows that access to school is granted to Iraqi children, however there are as many as 30 percent of Iraqi children between the age of 6 and 11 are not enrolled in schools. Poverty and insecure legal status are the main causes for families not enrolling their children in schools. However, it is difficult to analyse the causes of non-enrolment and drop-out because of the lack of comprisable figures for school enrolment in Iraq before the war. Finally, the report provides evidence from focus group discussions and discussions with NGOs that children are increasingly getting involved in informal labour market.

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