Back to the Future school project

Back to the Future Project

Phase 1: December 2016 – June 2019

Phase 2: June 2019 – June 2021

About the Syrian crisis

Hundreds of thousands of refugee children from Syria are waiting in Lebanon and Jordan for peace so that they can return to their homes. Most of them are in a hopeless situation. They live with their families in camps or houses and are especially vulnerable to exploitation, such as child trafficking and child labour. They often can not attend school. The project ‘Back to the Future’ answers the educational needs of these children to become the builders of a brighter future for Syria and the region. More than 450,000 Syrian refugee children in Lebanon and more than 240,000 in Jordan are aged between three and 18 years; 60 per cent of them are out of school. An entire generation is growing up with little reason to nurture hope in a better future. This is why education is crucial for the development of all those affected by the conflict.

About the project

Over two years (2019-2021), the project ‘Back to the Future’ aims at providing a protective and nurturing environment for over 16,955 local vulnerable and refugee children, ensuring extracurricular activities for 5,380 children, and referring 350 children at risk and/or with special needs to specialized services. In addition, it will indirectly impact 12,200 students through the upgrading 18 public schools and 4 learning centers across Lebanon. Finally, it will foster community engagement, by addressing 4,245 caregivers on matters such as educational activities and child protection.

  • Back to the Future school project
  • Back to the Future school project
  • Back to the Future school project
  • Back to the Future school project
  • Back to the Future school project
  • Back to the Future school project

The project responds to a number of educational barriers faced by vulnerable children in Lebanon and Jordan:

  • Lack of safe and dignified physical spaces for learning (schools not fit for purpose).
  • Caregivers’ lack of means to provide transportation, school meals and materials.
  • High drop-out rates of Syrian refugee children from public schools.
  • Child labor and early marriage in vulnerable communities.
  • Lack of awareness within refugee communities on how to enrol in public schools.
  • Long term (3 years+) out of school children unable to directly enter schools.
  • Children require Basic Literacy and Numeracy support to attend the public system.
  • Psychosocial problems identified in vulnerable children, resulting in educational difficulties, including ADHD, behavioral and other concentration problems.
  • Low language capacity (French/English) of Syrian refugee children, which created a barrier as the Lebanese public curricula is taught in these languages.

Our activities

  • Early childhood development programmes for children between aged between three and five years.
  • Basic literacy and numeracy activities for children aged between 8 and 14. Many children have learning disabilities because they have missed one or more years of schooling.
  • Foreign language courses, English and French (in Lebanon) to prepare children between 10 and 14 years old for education. Education in Lebanon is in English and French, while teaching in Syria is in Arabic.
  • Learning and homework support for children aged between eight and 14 years.
  • Psychosocial support (PSS) activities for children aged between eight and 14 years and their caregivers.
  • Recreational activities (including: art, play, theatre) enhance children’s well-being and provide safe spaces for learning and play.
  • Homework support: Afternoon classes for in-school children at risk of drop out/demonstrating poor grades in all subjects.
  • Repair and renovation of school facilities.
  • School transport is offered to the children, allowing a higher number of children to attend the school courses; and a snack during activities.

Project in two countries:

Lebanon – Jordan

Locations of our educational activities:

In our ‘Back to the Future’ educational centers we provide (see map):

  • Community-based early childhood education (CB-ECE)
  • Basic literacy and numeracy (BLN)
  • Foreign language support (FLS)
  • Foreign language course (FLC)
  • Homework support (HWS)

At governmental schools, we support children enrolled in schools with remedial classes, homework support and foreign language classes (BLN, HWS and FLC). In our own educational centers, we support children enrolled and not yet enrolled in schools with classes (CB-ECE, BLN, FLC and HWS). 


Lebanon (last update: June 2019)

  • 19,022  children were enrolled in our educational activities.
  • 10,915 children were enrolled in our non-formal education activities.
  • 8,107 children benefited from a learning support program.
  • 8 government schools have been rehabilitated.
  • 6,412 children have been referred to formal education.
  • 57,363 individuals have been reached during home visits with information about non formal and formal education opportunities in their communities.
  • 591 staff members, teachers and volunteers, were trained on child protection, first aid and animation skills.

Jordan  (last update: June 2019)

  • 15 government schools have been rehabilitated.
  • 2,700 children enrolled in our educational and non-formal education activities.
  • 44 teachers and education practitioners have been trained.

Back to the Future school project

This project is funded by the EU Regional Trust Fund in response to the Syrian Crisis – the ‘EU Madad Fund