NO TO BULLYING: Syrian Refugees create a mobile app to prevent bullying in schools

After fleeing the war in Syria and arriving in Lebanon, four refugee boys had no hope for their academic future. Then, they stumbled upon an opportunity to participate in the Generation of Innovation Leaders (GIL) program by UNICEF in Bourj Hammoud, Beirut. Still uncertain whether or not they would develop any digital skills or achieve positive results, the boys underwent the mobile application training facilitated by DOT Lebanon.

At the beginning of this course, Ali, one of the boys said: “Those who invent mobile apps must be incredible masterminds. I must study so hard to build such a creation.” Mohammad, another member of the group adds: “I thought programming and coding were so difficult, demanding a lot of work and effort. I discovered that we can learn it step by step. Coding needs logic.”

When the boys finished their application, Ali squealed with excitement, that they were able to accomplish what was once impossible. “I’m very proud of myself. I’m confident that I can go into this field when I grow up. Building useful applications and serving my community”.

Having suffered from bullying themselves, the four decided to create a mobile app that limits bullying and oppression in schools and academic institutions. With the purpose of spreading awareness in their culture where scholars sign an anti-bullying agreement, respecting the vow of having a safe environment that is harm-free.

The GIL program taught these boys how to create an idea, strategize then implement it to impact their society. Nawaf, one of the teammates stated “I can now make a difference in my school and influence my friends in a positive way. At least I can help limit this harmful behavior in the school.”  Teamwork has definitely expanded the squad’s expectations toward themselves and each other, enabling them to grasp the given knowledge and have critical thinking.

“I’ve already made one app and now I’m looking forward to the future.” Ali says “I believe that the tools and knowledge I gained in this course made me think differently about my future. I believe I can solve any problem I will face in life. I can find solutions through apps and implement them when I put my mind to it.”

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