UNICEF Middle East and North Africa

UNICEF helps build a world where the rights of every child are realized.

UNICEF works in more than 190 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence.

UNICEF MENA covers 20 countries in the Middle East and North Africa, stretching from Morocco to Iran and including Djibouti and Sudan.

For more information, visit www.unicef.org/mena
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AMMAN, 4 September 2013- Amidst heightened tensions across the region and as the number of Syria’s refugees rises beyond 2 million – half of them children – UNICEF continues to provide urgent life-saving supplies to children inside Syria and in Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq and Egypt.

“This is one of the largest humanitarian operations that UNICEF has ever undertaken,” said Maria Calivis, UNICEF’s Regional Director of the Middle East and North Africa. “We are working on the ground, round the clock with a wide network of dedicated partners to reach Syrian children across the region.”

Full text of the press release is available here.

Photo caption: As the new school year begins across the region, UNICEF is supporting children’s return to learning, providing school bags, materials and furniture.

Credit: UNICEF/Jordan-2013/Tulay Guler

It’s back to school month for many children across the region - and beyond.

In Syria, we’re helping primary school-aged children who have been displaced get ready for school by providing them with up to 1 million school bags containing stationary supplies to be distributed in all 14 governorates. 

We hope your school year and theirs is off to a great, safe and successful start! 

On Sunday, UNICEF and UPS teamed up to airlift 100 tonnes of critical supplies for about 20,000 Syrian child refugees and their families in Erbil, northern Iraq.

Over the past two weeks, almost 50,000 Syrians fled to Erbil, almost half of them are children. The supplies delivered last night will help meet their need for water, education and protection services.

Read more

Rahav spent two nights in a tent by a river before she could enter Iraq. Bashir misses his school and his teachers. Abeer really misses her grandma. 

Meet some of the children of Syria who have been through so much and are now learning to be children again. Hear from the people working day and night to help them. Don’t miss our latest Children of Syria newsletter


Last week the world marked a shameful milestone. 1 million child refugees forced to leave Syria.

“I hope to go back to Syria soon,” says Yasmine, one of the 1 million, now living in Za’atari camp in Jordan. “I miss my relatives, my friends and my school too.”

Here is a short video: http://youtu.be/xpG3jLGGkvc

You can also learn more about the #childrenofsyria and how you can help by visiting:


Even by simply sharing this link you are helping so…let try to put an end to this any way we can

[Real name has been changed]


Danny Glover and Edin Dzeko play ball
Although we have been posting alot about the situation in and around Syria and how over one million children have been forced to flee their homes…let us not forget some other children whose situation is just as fragile and…like the children living as refugees…with a little help…can live happy and productive lives.

We are talking about children with disabilites.

If you have a minute…please watch as Danny Glover and Edin Dzeko help raise awareness for vulnerable children - the goal…ensuring social inclusion for all children. 

According to Mr. Glover, “Children with disabilities and their communities both benefit if we all focus on what these children can achieve, rather than what they cannot.”

We couldn’t agree with you more Danny!!!

Infact…so much so that this year’s State of the World’s Children report (our “flagship publication) we focused solely on children with disabilities - check out: http://www.unicef.org/sowc2013/

Also…read more about Danny’s and Edin’s visit here: http://www.unicef.org/infobycountry/bosniaherzegovina_70233.html

All they want is to go back to school

Watch UNICEF colleagues in Turkey talk about the courage, resilience and determination of Syrian children living in refugee camps. 

By Mary Mendes 

ERBIL, Iraq, 26 August 2013Rahav picks up my blue UNICEF cap and gently fans me as the discomfort of the scorching heat becomes evident. The gesture is touching considering the long and tiring journey the 15-year-old had to take with her extended family of 26 to seek refuge from her war-torn country. They had just been allocated a tent in the temporary Kawergosk camp near Erbil, in northern Iraq.

Read the full story here. 

Photo caption: Rahav and her family arrived in Erbil after two nights camping by the Tigris river waiting for the borders with northern Iraq to open. Around 42,000 Syrians crossed into Iraq in one week

Credit: ©UNICEF/Iraq 2013/Mary Mendes

There are now 1 million child refugees who have fled Syria to neighbouring countries in search of safety. What a shameful milestone!

Read more. 

NEW YORK, 21 August 2013 – “The reports of attacks on civilians, presumably including children, on the outskirts of Damascus are deeply disturbing. 


“Such horrific acts should be a reminder to all the parties and all who have influence on them that this terrible conflict has gone on far too long and children have suffered more than enough.

“Children must be protected, and those who fail to protect them will be held accountable.”