European Union reaffirms its support towards WFP's cash assistance programme in Syria amidst deteriorating socio-economic conditions
The EU’s continued support towards the scale-up of cash assistance across Syria is now vital more than ever. Following years of devastating economic downturn, exorbitant food prices and fuel scarcity, food security is anticipated to worsen further due to the impact of the crisis in Ukraine. In March, food prices in Syria increased by 24 percent in just one month, following an 800 percent increase in the last two years. This has brought food prices to their highest level since 2013.
"After 11 years of crisis, the worsening economy and the war in Ukraine are the last straw for many Syrian families who have been coping till now,” says European Commissioner for Crisis Management, Janez Lenarčič. “Inside Syria, more than one in two people are food insecure and millions need humanitarian aid. The EU is committed to continue helping vulnerable Syrians, including with cash assistance as the most effective and dignified way to do so.”
Cash transfers such as those supported by the EU humanitarian funding are providing a lifeline for families facing multiple threats to their health and well-being in Syria.
“In a moment of unprecedented needs like this one, cash assistance not only represents a lifeline for thousands of people, but it also provides them with choice and flexibility to best address their needs according to their priorities,” says WFP Country Director a.i. Ross Smith.
An estimated 14.6 million people are in need of assistance in Syria - equating to an increase of 1.2 million people compared with 2021. Additionally, one in eight children in Syria suffers from stunting, while pregnant and nursing women show record levels of acute wasting, posing devastating health consequences for generations to come. Within this context, an estimated 12 million people or 55% of the entire population are food insecure.
Since 2021, WFP has scaled up its food assistance to reach an average of 5.6 million people each month but the needs keep outpacing resources. Funding from the EU is helping Syrian families to access lifesaving food and rebuild their lives.
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The United Nations World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.
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