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This brief explores the impact of the economic and social disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic on the living conditions of Syrian refugees residing in the Za’atari Refugee Camp - in Mafraq, northern Jordan - and on refugees residing within the Jordanian host communities -Ramtha, Mafraq, and Amman.
The purpose of this brief is to highlight the living conditions of these refugees and to raise awareness of the importance of preparedness for future alike scenarios through forward-looking policies and actions that ensure better access to basic needs. Based on structured interviews and desk research, the brief will evaluate these conditions beyond the common indicators of household assets, capabilities, and activities and will zoom into how (lack of) access to water resources and educational services can translate into aggravating vulnerabilities during pandemic conditions.
The brief tackles three main issues: the institutional progress in the water sector, to understand and answer to national water scarcity conditions; the status of the education sector as a vital tool to ensure the integration of marginalized groups, namely persons with disabilities; and the international aid needed to benefit refugees both in host communities and informal camp setting.
Through the lens and voices of Syrian refugees, the brief depicts the implications of the lockdown that was enforced in March 2020. Notably, these resulted in an extra layer of visible confinement to refugees’ daily activities and a threat to their current living conditions and future plans. Finally the Brief provides some recommendations that could help alleviate the conditions of the refugees which could serve as lessons learned.