George Clooney and wife to help Syrian refugees get an education


George Clooney (right) and his wife Amal arrive at the 66th Berlinale Film Festival in Berlin.
George Clooney (right) and his wife Amal arrive at the 66th Berlinale Film Festival in Berlin.PHOTO: AFP

NEW YORK (AFP) - George and Amal Clooney plan to help nearly 3,000 Syrian refugee children go to school this year in Lebanon.

More than one million Syrians - including over 500,000 children - are registered as refugees in Lebanon after fleeing the devastating war that has lasted more than six years in neighbouring Syria.

Unicef said on Monday that close to 200,000 Syrian refugee children in Lebanon are out of school. Human Rights Watch estimates the number at more than 250,000.

The nearly 3,000 Syrian children's education will be funded through a partnership announced by The Clooney Foundation for Justice with Google.

The partnership with Unicef will help seven public schools educate the students, who are not currently in school, and will support a pilot of technology tools in these schools for refugee and Lebanese children, the Clooneys said.

"Thousands of young Syrian refugees are at risk - the risk of never being a productive part of society. Formal education can help change that," the couple said in a statement.

"We don't want to lose an entire generation because they had the bad luck of being born in the wrong place at the wrong time," they added.