Basma was at school one day when her classroom was hit by airstrikes. The eight-year-old wasn’t hurt, but the explosion killed 20 of her friends.
Conflict in Syria means there has never been a more dangerous time for children to go to school.
More than half the schools in Syria are in areas of active conflict. At least 68 schools have been bombed, killing an estimated 160 children. Basma and her family fled their home in the capital of Damascus when war broke out.
I really loved my school back home, it was pretty, my teacher loved me and I had a lot of friends. I remember that we weren’t just studying but we were also playing all the time and did a lot of activities and sport.
More than seven million people have been displaced since fighting began in 2011. Basma and her family headed north for safety. She changed schools three times. Two of them were bombed.
My family decided to move further to the north because at the time it was safer. But the first school we went to was so bad and the teachers used to hit us even for little things like if I forgot my homework. The teachers used to leave us most of the time alone in the class doing nothing; it was so bad and I hated it.
Every day children like Basma are being forced to drop out of school. Their classrooms are under attack. Their teachers have left. Families are on the run and don’t have access to education. Syria now has the second worst rate of enrolment in the world, with more than half of all children out of school.
Basma is one of the lucky ones. She has started at a new school, supported by Save the Children. We are working with 55 schools in northern Syria, repairing classrooms, stocking them with supplies, and supporting teachers. So far nearly 25,000 Syrian children have returned to education. Getting children back to school can save their lives, their health and their futures.
I want to become a doctor in the future and my wish is to always stay in this school and to never leave again because I have many friends here right now and I love my teachers.