Over 100 Students from the Class of 2017 at the Siblin Training Centre North Campus Graduate with the support of UNRWA and the European Union

11 August 2017
Palestine refugee students graduate from the Siblin Training Centre North Campus, Lebanon. © 2017 UNRWA Photo by Maysoun Mustafa

The UNRWA Siblin Training Centre (STC) North Campus held its tenth graduation ceremony on 10 August 2017 and celebrated the achievements of the 102 students who are graduating with expertise in four majors: business administration, secretarial, civil engineering and general electrical installations.

The Deputy Director of UNRWA Affairs in Lebanon, Gwyn Lewis, addressed the students, saying: “I would like to congratulate you for your hard work, your perseverance and your passion for education. I hope that the values and skills you developed at the Siblin Training Centre will be your ticket to a brighter future and a better life.”  

She highlighted the long-standing partnership between UNRWA and the European Union by saying, “I would also like to thank the European Union for its ongoing support, in particular its support for technical and vocational training, which increases Palestine refugees’ employment opportunities.”

Speaking on behalf of his fellow graduates, Abdulkarim Najem thanked his teachers and the STC administration for their constant support and high-quality work. He said: “Studying at the Siblin Training Centre was my only chance at higher education and I’m very grateful for it. With this degree in civil engineering, I can start my life with sure steps despite all the challenges.”

Concluding the ceremony, representatives from UNRWA distributed honorary trophies to distinguished students and diplomas to the 102 graduates.

EU and UNRWA: Together for Palestine Refugees

Since 1971, the European Union and UNRWA have maintained a strategic partnership governed by the shared objective to support the human development, humanitarian and protection needs of Palestine refugees and promote stability in the Middle East. Today, the European Union is the largest multilateral provider of international assistance to Palestine refugees. This reliable and predictable support from the European Union enables UNRWA to provide core services to more than 5 million Palestine refugees in Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, the West Bank and Gaza, including quality education for roughly half a million children and primary health care for more than 3.5 million patients. Collectively, the EU and its Member States are also among the largest contributors to the Agency’s humanitarian emergency appeals and projects in response to various crises and specific needs across the region. The partnership between the European Union and UNRWA has allowed millions of Palestine refugees to be better educated, live healthier lives, access employment opportunities and improve their living conditions, thus contributing to the development of the entire region.

Background Information

UNRWA is confronted with an increased demand for services resulting from a growth in the number of registered Palestine refugees, the extent of their vulnerability and their deepening poverty. UNRWA is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions and financial support has been outpaced by the growth in needs. As a result, the UNRWA Programme Budget, which supports the delivery of core essential services, operates with a large shortfall. UNRWA encourages all Member States to work collectively to exert all possible efforts to fully fund the Agency’s Programme Budget. UNRWA emergency programmes and key projects, also operating with large shortfalls, are funded through separate funding portals.

UNRWA is a United Nations agency established by the General Assembly in 1949 and mandated to provide assistance and protection to some 5 million registered Palestine refugees. Its mission is to help Palestine refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, West Bank and the Gaza Strip achieve their full human development potential, pending a just and lasting solution to their plight. UNRWA services encompass education, health care, relief and social services, camp infrastructure and improvement, protection and microfinance.

For more information, please contact:

Anne Colquhoun
Communications Manager – Lebanon (English)
Mobile: 
+961 76 884475
Huda Samra
Communications Advisor – Lebanon (Arabic and Francophone)
Mobile: 
+961 81 666 134
Abdallah Chebly
EU Delegation to Lebanon Communication Officer
Mobile: 
+961 71 522701
Office: 
+961 (1) 569400 ext: 295