Syrian refugee teenager in Jordan wishes to go to school

Mohammad, a 15-year-old Syria, works at a butcher's shop to make money for his family despite wanting to go to school

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Mohammad, a 15-year-old Syrian kid who fled to Amman, Jordan, with family a year ago and worked there, said last Friday he wants to go to school just as local children do.

Mohammad has been working in a butcher's shop for five months. His job is cutting the vegetables, grinding the meats, and assisting his master. He said it is not complicated though, to keep working more than ten hours every day is not a piece of cake.

As a teenager, Mohammad said it is also not easy for him to find a job, so he works really hard and carefully. However, Mohammad said he can't help looking over at the Jordanian students wearing bags whenever they entered the shop, and he knows clearly that he doesn't belong here.

"Whenever students come here to buy meat pie I feel sad. Why can't I go to school just like them?" said Mohammed.

The ongoing Syrian crisis forced Mohammsd to quit school there. During the one year in Jordan, Mohammad and his two brothers had to earn money just like their parents due to the high living cost. Despite this, Mohammad said he misses his friends in Syria, and the old days they went to school together.

"I want to go back to Syria and play and study with friends. There is a university in my hometown. I want to pursue further study there after high school education," said Mohammad.

According to the statistics of United Nation's International Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF), more than 600,000 registered Syrian refugees are living in Jordan now, and 200,000 of them are school-age children. More than a half of them can't receive education due to economic problems or other reasons.

Toby Fricker, a communication specialist of UNICEF in Jordan, said education is really important for the Syrian refugee students like Mohammad.

"Because in the future, the kids gonna go back to Syria, they gonna play a key role in rebuilding the country. And to do that they need to be educated, or they need at least have gone through the basic literacy and numeracy, to be able to fulfill as much as they can," said Fricker.

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