Jenin camp, with its population of 14,000 residents, borders the Jenin municipality and is the northernmost camp in the West Bank. It has been the scene of significant suffering, having been established in 1953 after the original camp in the area was destroyed in a snowstorm. Jenin camp was also severely affected by the second intifada, when the Israeli Defense Forces occupied the camp in 2002 after ten days of intensive fi¬ghting. More than 400 homes were destroyed in the operation, with hundreds more being severely damaged. More than a quarter of the population was rendered homeless.
UNRWA coordinate and implemented the reconstruction of the camp, and an additional piece of land (the size of roughly 3 per cent of the original Jenin surface area) was developed adjacent to the camp, which reduced overcrowding.
Today, protection issues remain a primary concern for residents of Jenin camp. Both Israeli and Palestinian security forces conduct regular operations in the camp that often result in clashes and violence. In 2014, four refugees were killed during these operations. The violence has also had a significant impact on the emotional and psychosocial well-being of young children especially.
Jenin also experiences one of the highest rates of unemployment and poverty among the 19 West Bank refugee camps. Many residents previously relied upon work in Israel, which has been severely curtailed since the construction of the Barrier and the implementation of the permit regime. Unemployment and poverty has affected the youth especially, resulting in widespread dissatisfaction and frustration and contributing to higher school dropout rates among younger children.