The Syria Crisis is the largest political, humanitarian and development challenge of our time. All indicators are that the human costs of the Syria crisis will continue to grow in 2015 and 2016, with continuing population movements, and deepening vulnerabilities. Syria’s main neighbours (Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq and Turkey) are hosting many millions of refugees from Syria.
Turkey, Syria’s most populous neighbour, hosts an estimated 1.6 million Syrians (1 million of whom are registered as refugees), spread across urban areas and 22 camps. The number of Syrians in Turkey is expected to grow to 1.7 million by the end of 2015. Despite its generosity, the government has been struggling to halt the spread of vulnerabilities in the education sector, where 70 per cent of the 550,000 Syrian children are estimated to be out of school, and the health sector, for which clinics have reported a 30-40 per cent increase in patient load. For last winter, OC helped a client support Turkey and the people affected by the Syria humanitarian crisis with winterisation: distribution of suitable clothing and fuel.
Remember winters in the region can be cold – last winter, snow storms led to temperatures up to -15C … paraphrasing UNHCR:
Should the required funding for its winterisation campaign not be received, humanitarian players would not be able to reach out and distribute to refugees, who are often living in sub-standard conditions. Nor would UNHCR and others be able to adequately support the Government’s efforts in providing essential items to support 250,000 people in camps during the cold winter season. The planned distribution of winter clothes, high thermal blankets and heaters would need to be reprioritised, in the context of winter assistance, with perhaps only the distribution of blankets possible.
OC is getting ready to support its clients implement winterisation projects again: does your organisation lack the necessary/ temporary/ local capacity? Get in touch and we will do it for you, as if it were your organisation.