Syrian children who are reaching their 10th birthday this year do so along another ten-year milestone — that of the Syrian War. These children have spent the most formative years of their lives knowing nothing but war, violence and displacement.
Five million children are among the estimated 12.3 million people displaced by the Syrian conflict. This group of displaced children is larger than the entire populations of 27 US states and countries like Ireland, Panama or New Zealand.
These figures help contextualize the vast scope of this crisis without delving into its toll. But as our new brief highlights, this crisis is uniquely harmful to children.
Childhood is a pivotal period in every person’s development. Research shows that when children experience prolonged, severe trauma such as in conflict settings, it can disrupt healthy development and impact them for years to come.
This decade of conflict coinciding with such a formative stage in their lives has already caused profound damage to the psychological wellbeing of these millions of children.