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Tight funding forces WFP to reduce food assistance for Syrian refugees in Jordan, including in camps

CAIRO – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) said today that further reductions in food assistance for refugees in Jordan have become unavoidable as funds run precariously low. The food agency is compelled to reduce by one-third the monthly cash assistance for all 119,000 Syrian refugees in Zaatari and Azraq camps.

Starting in August, Syrian refugees in the camps will receive a reduced cash allowance of US$21 (JOD 15) per person per month, down from the previous amount of US$32 (JOD 23). Syrian refugees living in both camps have limited income sources with only 30 percent of adults working – mainly in temporary or seasonal jobs – while 57 percent of camp residents say cash assistance is their only source of income.  

“We are deeply concerned about the potential deterioration of families’ food security but as funding dries up, our hands are tied,” said WFP Representative and Country Director in Jordan Alberto Correia Mendes. “These reductions are likely to lead to increased negative coping strategies.”  

Negative coping strategies, including child labour, withdrawal of children from school, child marriage, and accumulating more debt, have already increased among refugees in camps by 25 percent compared to last year. 

The reduction in the level of assistance highlights the urgent challenges faced by WFP in providing crucial support to vulnerable refugees in Jordan. Despite reducing the value of its cash assistance for all refugees living outside camps and gradually excluding approximately 50,000 individuals from the assistance to prioritize the poorest families, WFP still faces a critical funding shortfall of US$41 million until the end of 2023. 

Since the onset of the Syria crisis, WFP has steadfastly provided life-saving support to vulnerable Syrian refugees in Jordan, ensuring their access to basic food needs. However, with mounting funding challenges, WFP has been compelled to scale down its response to stretch the limited available resources.   

WFP acknowledges the unwavering support of the Jordanian government and its people in hosting Syrian refugees over the years. As the situation evolves, WFP is keenly aware of the shared responsibility to safeguard the well-being of refugees and will continue to work diligently with partners and donors to explore sustainable solutions. 

Across the region, funding constraints have forced WFP to scale back assistance in Syria and in Palestine as low funding left the food agency with little room to continue providing assistance at previous levels.  

WFP is grateful for the generous support from donors and appeals to the entire international community to support our critical lifesaving and life-changing operations – big or small – to ensure that no hungry families are left behind. 


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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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Mariana Elkhoury, WFP/Amman,
Mob. +962 79 1295615 

Abeer Etefa, WFP/Cairo,
Mob. +2010 66634352 

Reem Nada, WFP/Cairo,
Mob. +2010 6663 4522