In Essyan Camp, a camp with displaced Yazidis in the Autonomous Region of Kurdistan, Shelter Now has been supporting a children’s center for years.

“We started five years ago with 60 children,” says Helin. “All of them were orphans or half-orphans whose parents had been abducted or killed by the Islamic State. For them, we designed supplementary programs to the school lessons in the camp, mainly according to the principles of Montessori education.” The girls and boys, aged four to 14, are enthusiastically involved in music, sports, art, storytelling and much more.

The offers are so attractive that the center has grown to over 200 children. So our staff had to divide the large group of children into two groups, which now come to the center in alternating weeks. “But we need more space,” the director said.

By now not only orphans visit the center, because the camp has now existed for more than eight years; many of the younger ones were already born here and do not know any life outside the refugee camp. For them and also for the orphans and youth, the center means therapy, healing and education – and above all: a lot of fun and joy.


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