© WFP/Mercy USA
As the Syrian crisis enters its tenth year, the humanitarian situation remains dire. Millions of people have been displaced from their homes, and those who remain are struggling to access sufficient food and rebuild their lives.
Conflict, displacement and economic pressures are driving hunger, and Syrian families need our help more than ever.
Conflicts in Syria’s northeast and northwest have increased levels of hunger and food insecurity as families have lost their homes, businesses and incomes. As conflicts continue, families are being pushed further into poverty and are resorting to detrimental measures – such as going into debt and eating smaller and fewer meals – to survive.
In December 2019, conflict escalated in northwest Syria and western Aleppo. Close to one million people were forced to flee their homes in the largest wave of displacement since the crisis began. Many are now sheltering in over-crowded camps and have left their homes on foot, taking just what they could carry. 80 percent of these displaced people are women and children who are now in need of ongoing humanitarian assistance.
WFP launched an immediate response and scaled up its ongoing humanitarian operations in the northwest and is now providing emergency food assistance to more than one million people each month through our cross-border operation from Turkey.
In addition to conflict, food prices are rapidly increasing across the country, putting pressure on families to meet their basic needs. Nationwide average food prices have increased by a staggering 247 percent in just one year – the highest ever recorded. Even during the worst years of conflict, Syrian families have never been under the economic pressure they are facing now. Food prices are now more than 22 times higher than they were at the start of the conflict, putting a basic meal beyond the reach of many.
Humanitarian assistance from WFP is critical to help vulnerable families from slipping into hunger, poverty and food insecurity.
Across Syria, WFP continues to ensure that food reaches the most vulnerable families when they need it the most.
What the World Food Programme is doing to respond to the Syria emergency
WFP provides lifesaving food to 4.8 million people each month across all 14 governates of Syria. This includes distributing emergency food assistance to families in northwest Syria to help them to meet their immediate needs in times of crisis.
Resilience and livelihoods
Livelihood and resilience projects are a core part of WFP’s humanitarian response in Syria, designed to protect and restore families’ livelihoods and food security, strengthen resilience to shocks, and help to restore local economies. These activities provide beneficiaries with the skills and infrastructure they need to become self-sufficient and take ownership of their own food needs.
Millions of Syrian children have had their educations interrupted by conflict, and WFP’s school feeding programme is helping to avoid a lost generation by providing students a powerful incentive to attend class. Each day, hundreds of thousands of children know they will receive a healthy meal or snack from WFP that will help them to concentrate, stay healthy and reach their full potential.
WFP’s nutrition activities support pregnant and breastfeeding women and girls, as well as children under 5 to prevent and address malnutrition and micro-nutrient deficiencies. Mothers and children receive specialized nutritious food to meet their unique needs, electronic vouchers so they can purchase more diverse diets, and regular monitoring to ensure they are becoming stronger and healthier.
WFP is struggling to meet the urgent food needs of more than five million displaced people in Syria and in neighbouring countries every month. Due to funding shortfalls in Syria, WFP has already been forced to reduce the calories in the food basket. Given the 2-3 months procurement lead time to have the commodities in-country ready for distribution, WFP requires US$ 332 million by April 2021.
How you can help
Your donation will make a difference. Support WFP’s work to save and change the lives of families across Syria. Together we can help Syrians to access emergency assistance and rebuild their lives.