Situation Update: Syria
16/05/2012 4:41:28 PM
The combination of increasing levels of violence, poor access to services, and disruptions in livelihoods is putting more lives at risk in Syria. According to May 2012 data from UNHCR, more than 54,000 people have left Syria and are seeking refuge in neighbouring countries. UNICEF estimates that around half of all displaced Syrians are children and adolescents, who continue to have limited access to essential services, disruptions in schooling, and psychosocial problems caused by the violence and displacement. Ceasefire violations by the armed opposition and Syrian government forces continue as more UN monitors arrive. The UN currently has 189 observers in Syria making day and night patrols in Damascus, Homs, Hama, Daraa and Idlib. The UN plans to deploy 300 unarmed military observers for a 90-day mission in Syria by the end of May.
International Orthodox Christian Charities (IOCC) is implementing the Syria ACT appeal through its offices in Lebanon and Jordan and in full partnership with the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch and All the East (GOPA) in Syria. IOCC staff follows standard international procedures, abiding by the ACT Code of Conduct and applying Sphere Standards in all its operations in the Middle East and worldwide.
In Syria, IOCC is coordinating with the Syrian Red Crescent and working through local church organisations. Assistance is being provided to displaced families through hygiene, infant and quilt kits in areas including Homs and Damascus. Further distributions have been made with the help of other local organisations. Training has also been provided to local church members to support humanitarian distributions.
In Lebanon, IOCC is coordinating with UNHCR and other humanitarian agencies and in Jordan, IOCC will provide family hygiene kits and bedding sets to Syrian refugees.
IOCC has already distributed 500 family food parcels in the city of Homs and 500 family hygiene parcels in Bekaa Valley Lebanon. In the coming week, more than 4,000 families will be assisted in Homs, through the provision of hygiene parcels, infant kits and family bedding sets. Health awareness workshops on nutrition and infant feeding are also planned for refugee populations in Lebanon
IOCC and its partner organisations continue to work with conflict affected communities under extremely challenging circumstances. IOCC remains ready to respond to emerging humanitarian needs with both displaced and refugee populations.