Turkey opens 'city' for orphans of the war
Turkey has opened a vast centre dedicated to housing and educating orphans from war-torn Syria. The complex, in the south-eastern border town of Reyhanli, will house 990 children in what Turkish media say is a cosy, home environment.
According to BBC’s article Syria conflict: Turkey opens 'city' for orphans of the war, the children will live in 55 villas and have access to four schools, a mosque, a playground and a sports arena. Another 5,000 children not living in Orphans City will reportedly benefit from services and facilities at the complex.
The centre was built in less than two years as a co-operative project between Turkey's government and two aid groups. The United Nations Children's Fund (Unicef) estimates that six million children have been affected by the six-year conflict in Syria.
More than 2.3 million have fled the country and are registered as refugees. Turkey currently hosts more than 800,000 school-aged Syrian children, of whom only about 60% were enrolled in schools at the start of the academic year. Orphans City was built with the help of the Turkish pro-government IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation and Qatar's Sheikh Thani bin Abdullah Foundation for Humanitarian Services (RAF). Its website says it aims to help rehabilitate the "war-related psychological problems and traumas" of Syrian orphans, particularly those living on the streets. Eighteen children will live in each two-storey villa along with a "caretaker" and will study at the two primary and two secondary schools built inside the complex.