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Source: United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA)
23 August 2013

433 students graduate from UNRWA Siblin Training Centre
23 August 2013

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) held a graduation ceremony for 433 graduates at its Siblin Training Centre in Saida. The graduation ceremony was attended by the Director of UNRWA Affairs in Lebanon Ann Dismorr, and the Palestinian Ambassador to Lebanon Achraf Dabbour, Palestinian political leaders, and representatives of the Palestinian and Lebanese Business Forum, as well as students, parents and community members.

Addressing the challenging employment situation for Palestinians in Lebanon, Dismorr encouraged the graduates to continue their education, saying: “I am confident that your training will give you an edge and hope you will be able to achieve your career goals in the coming months and years.”

The Principal of the Siblin Training Centre Samer Serhan thanked all the teachers and trainers for their efforts, and saluted UNRWA for the facilities it provides at the Centre.

Following the speeches, the graduates were given their diplomas, and the ceremony was concluded with a speech from a graduate, Mohammad Hwaidi, who thanked UNRWA and the Centre for the skills he learned as a student there. Hwaidi emphasized the importance of UNRWA continuing to provide a variety of vocational training courses to the Palestine refugee community in Lebanon.

In 2010, an UNRWA-AUB study revealed that both poverty and unemployment rates are significantly lower among Palestinians in Lebanon with vocational or higher education. One of the goals of UNRWA is to address poverty and unemployment, especially among youth. Providing high quality technical and vocational training is an important step in doing achieving this goal.

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Background information

UNRWA is a United Nations agency established by the General Assembly in 1949 and is mandated to provide assistance and protection to a population of some five million registered Palestine refugees. Its mission is to help Palestine refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, West Bank and the Gaza Strip to achieve their full potential in human development, pending a just solution to their plight. UNRWA’s services encompass education, health care, relief and social services, camp infrastructure and improvement, and microfinance.

Financial support to UNRWA has not kept pace with an increased demand for services caused by growing numbers of registered refugees, expanding need, and deepening poverty. As a result, the Agency's General Fund (GF), supporting UNRWA’s core activities and 97 per cent reliant on voluntary contributions, has begun each year with a large projected deficit. Currently the deficit stands at US$ 54.3 million.

For more information, please contact:

Lebanon Field Office, Beirut
Tel: (+ 961 1) 840468

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