The Almajd school in the rebel-controlled eastern city of Benghazi is a chance for Libyan children to take part in the normal activity of going to school in the midst of unusual circumstances. Despite the continued fighting, the teachers want the kids to have some sort of routine.
Najwa Alharat, a teacher at the school says its important for Benghazi’s image as well:
“We get them to come here to show the world that the Libyan people will never be defeated and so the children don’t spend all their time sitting at home.”
Schools and universities have been shut in the rebel-held east since the uprising began. UN children’s organisation UNICEF is sponsoring this centre, which is both for learning and entertainment. It is an opportunity for the children to express how they are feeling through art says student, Khadeeja Bint Gasi:
“This is a drawing of the evacuees who are scared of the army brigades and shelling from Gaddafi. They’ve been trying to protect themselves and escape to the border.”
Erasing traces that it used to be a state-run school, this is one of many that is opening for a few hours a day, providing relief for kids experiencing a conflict that does not look like it will end soon.