School for Refugees

School for Refugees (SfR) aims to promote the rights for education through advocacy, preparation college and local integration.
Good Practices

School for Refugees

School for Refugees (SfR) aims to promote the rights for education through advocacy, preparation college and local integration.
A young girl holding her certificate to show the camera, with smiling adults around her and balloons in the background

"The teachers of SfR are very respectful and the appointments were good. Thank you for the good treatment. As for coming to Indonesia, because we have personal matters, Adam was almost killed, we fled and in addition to that. My country is at war."

- Parents of Adam, refugee from Yemen, Student of SfR Batch VII

The project in brief

The project is implemented by Dompet Dhuafa in Indonesia. It began in 2016 and is currently ongoing.

School For Refugees (SfR) Project was initiated by the Yayasan Dompet Dhuafa Republika in 2015, as immediate basic needs support for the refugee children (influx) in Aceh, Indonesia. This project then expanded with 3 activities : Rights for Education Advocacy, School Preparation College and Encouraging refugee’s local integration.

Advocating the rights of education for the refugee children through enrollment in public school and preparing children refugees' capacity and culturally adapted for integration with local students are conducted simultaneously. While aiming the refugee family coexistence with the host community peacefully.

The goals are fulfilling the rights of the education for the children refugee and to enhance the local integration between the refugees and the host community.

Main activities of the Good Practice

There are various activities in the School for Refugees (SfR), such as:

  • Teaching and Learning Activities Indonesian Language Preparation
  • Matriculation of curriculum lessons Indonesian public school (math, science, social, civic education)
  • Extracurricular Class (handicraft and vocational skill)
  • Parents Meeting
  • Outing Class (Knowing Indonesian Culture)
  • Support school kit and monthly allowance
  • Eventual Event; World Refugee Day and Ramadhan Event
  • School Visits and Public School Teacher Training
Two children making a speech on stage at their graduation ceremony, with balloons behind them

Elements which helped facilitate the implementation of the good practice

Republic of Indonesia Laws and regulations, including:

  • Law No. 39 Year 1999 on Human Rights
  • Law No. 35 Year 2014 Amending Law on Child Protection (Law No. 23 Year 2022)
  • Presidential Decree No 25 Year 2016 on Treatment of Foreign Refugee

Partners involved

Lembaga Pengembangan Insani Dompet Dhuafa (LPI DD)

What challenges were encountered in delivering the project and how were they overcome?


Challenges we faced in this School for Refugee (SfR):

  • Teachers are needed who can understand the characteristics of the two cultures between managers and refugees. When the teacher does not really understand the social and cultural conditions in Indonesia, there will be a bias from the teacher who always uses the refugee's point of view. Conversely, teachers who are purely Indonesian will always use the perspective of Indonesians, so there are aspects of refugee culture that are often missed by teachers.
  • The issue of refugees is not only related to education. Health and economic conditions are also important issues for refugees. Finally, because they feel "helped" by School for Refugee (which only touches on the education aspect), refugees also ask for help from School for Refugees (SfR) regarding health and economy.

How they were overcome

School for Refugees (SFR) recruits teachers who are refugees themselves who have lived long enough in Indonesia, because previously the teachers came from us. Before the teacher runs the program, we first hold School for Refugee Academy (SfR Academy) to equalise perceptions as well as upgrading competencies, with the appointment of teachers who come from refugees, it can be a bridge between managers and refugees.

LPI DD tried to redesign the School for Refugee (SfR) program. In collaboration with the health division, advocacy, Lembaga Pelayan Masyarakat (LPM), and other organs in Dompet Dhuafa, School for Refugees (SfR) tries to start touching other aspects outside of refugee education.

A woman is presented with a certificate and a gift

Results of the Good Practice

For the refugees, some are already attending public school. For life when School for Refugees (SfR) itself, Refugees have daily activities which previously their activities were only staying at home and the refugee scope. After the program, refugees can mingle with the surrounding community.

In what way does the good practice meet one or more of the four objectives of the Global Compact on Refugees?

Objective 2: Enhance refugee self-reliance

Through education, refugee children have better opportunities in their future.

Next steps

Will be re-done with a different scheme from the previous batches.

Are there areas in which support would be required to continue and/or scale up your good practice?

There are certain fields such as the economy, da'wah, social services, health and advocacy of the dhuafa wallet.