Over half the world’s refugees are children. In just a decade the number of child refugees has doubled to 8 million. Leaving home and fleeing is a terrifying experience for anyone, let alone for children. But it doesn’t end there. Child refugees are often at risk of diseases, malnutrition, exploitation and abuse. They also risk dropping out of school for a longer period, which may deny them chances in later life.
In East Africa and the Great Lakes region, now home to 4 million refugees, the EU supports education for children in emergencies but also child-friendly spaces. These spaces are more than just glorified playgrounds. They provide vulnerable children such as unaccompanied minors with protection and help them process traumatic experiences. Here’s a look at the goings on at a child friendly space for Burundian refugees in Tanzania.
Story and photos © EU/ECHO/Anouk Delafortrie