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 in Syria was replaced by a mattress that he shares with his sisters on the ground inside their caravan. At school in Syria, he dreamed of becoming a veterinarian like his father. But at school in Zaatari, he felt isolated. After a short time, he dropped out.

Homesick for Syria, Nabil could not sleep at night. How could he move on?

Nabil had lost faith in everyone around him when he came to Questscope’s informal education program. But there, he found a safe place. Over time, he began eagerly participating in activities. His burden of isolation was eased by new friendships.

Nabil sleeps better at night, knowing that in the morning he can come to Questscope and spend the day learning again, playing again, and feeling normal again. He has found the confidence to go back to formal education and has completed seventh grade, once again on his way to pursuing his dreams of becoming a veterinarian.

Questscope helps young refugees like Nabil move forward, and live. In contrast to the darkness of war, their future is bright. Just the way it should be. 

Name has been changed to protect confidentiality.