Applying Social Enterprise to Refugee Settings

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Applying Social Enterprise to Refugee Settings

A self-sufficient and successful couple—a teacher and a judge—suddenly found their world turned upside-down in March 2011, when they were forced to flee their home in Syria due to the violent civil war. Today, they live in a foreign land, impoverished, unable to pursue their careers or support their children without the help of others. Meanwhile, a mother becomes tearful as she laments the fact that her children must work and have no time for school. In another family, a teenage son has now been out of school too long to be allowed back. He lives in a sort of limbo: no school, no recreation, no money. We hear stories like these again and again in our conversations with refugees and humanitarian workers in Lebanon.

Lebanon has a refugee problem—a bad one. War and political turmoil have brought more than one million Syrians to this tiny Mediterranean nation. These newcomers join previous waves of Palestinian and Iraqi refugees; approximately 1 in 4 persons of the country’s 4.4 million is now a refugee. . .

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