EU education in emergencies programme in Turkey reaches first refugee families

BRUSSELS — The largest-ever European Union, EU, humanitarian programme for education in emergencies, which aims to encourage some 230,000 refugee children to attend school in Turkey by the end of 2017, has started its first payments to refugee families.

The Conditional Cash Transfer for Education, CCTE, project has received EUR34 million of EU funding through the EU Facility for Refugees in Turkey. It works by providing cash transfers every two months to refugee families whose children regularly attend school.

Christos Stylianides, Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management, attended the project’s opening ceremony, held today in Ankara, and said, “Refugee children have survived events that are unimaginable to most of us. That is why investing in education is crucial and is a priority for the European Union. We want to help these children to regain a sense of normality and give them opportunities for the future. I am proud to announce that the programme is now fully up and running, and already we have reached the families of 56,000 refugee children. I thank our partner, the United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF, as well as the Turkish Red Crescent and the Turkish government, for sharing our commitment to make education a right for all.”

The project is being implemented in partnership with UNICEF and its local partner, the Turkish Red Crescent, to extend the Turkish government’s existing national CCTE programme, which has been in place since 2003, to reach a larger number of refugee children.

The CCTE programme uses the same debit card as another EU-funded humanitarian aid programme in Turkey, called the Emergency Social Safety Net, ESSN, which provides monthly cash transfers through a debit card to the most vulnerable refugees in Turkey. Over 600,000 refugees are already receiving monthly payments through the ESSN programme, while the EU hopes to reach 1.3 million refugees by the end of the year.

Source: Emirates News Agency