Educo has been supporting Rohingyas living in Cox's Bazar since 2018, helping vulnerable Rohingya girls access protection services in the camps
Educo, a global development non-governmental organization (NGO) focused on education and child protection, has called for increased support to help Rohingya children access quality remote learning alternatives amid school closures brought about by the coronavirus pandemic.
The child rights organization made the plea for help in a press release on Monday.
A recent survey led by local organization SKUS with support from Educo found that the majority of Rohingya children have been coping with school closures by learning on their own without adequate learning materials or very little guidance from educators.
A Rohingya refugee living in Cox's Bazar receives hygiene kit from Educo and Childfund Korea | CourtesyMatiur Rahman, Educo Cox’s Bazar emergency response head of mission, said: “Even before the pandemic, Rohingya adolescents and youth have had limited access to relevant education, vocational and life skills learning in the camps. But this pandemic is threatening education efforts made by agencies to help children access informal education.
“Our fear is that the reduction of informal education services and limited child protection services in the camps put children at greater risk of forced early marriage, child labor, and physical and sexual violence," Rahman added.
Kasmin Ara, 12, a Rohingya teen living in a camp in Cox’s Bazar, told Educo in an interview how her life drastically changed since the pandemic.
“Before the coronavirus pandemic, I used to go to a learning center to study tailoring, how to cut and sew clothes. I really enjoy sewing and learned many types of clothes design.
“Due to the coronavirus pandemic, all learning centers were closed. I miss my friends in the tailoring center. If the outbreak didn’t happen, I would have completed my lessons and become a tailor by now,” she added.
Abdul Hamid, country director of Educo Bangladesh, said: "Cases of violence against children, women, and girls are likely to increase in the country as the coronavirus crisis drags on. But if we come together and support one another with hope and courage, we will be able to get through the hurdles."
Educo has been supporting Rohingyas living in Cox's Bazar since 2018, helping vulnerable Rohingya girls access protection services in the camps. When coronavirus hit Bangladesh, Educo and Childfund Korea immediately launched a Covid-19 emergency response in Cox’s Bazar to help Rohingya families and the host community protect themselves from the disease.