With the conflict in Syria well into its sixth year and with little progress on the political front, United Nations Agencies and NGO partners today appealed for US$4.69 billion in new funding to continue vital work over the next two years.
The Regional Refugee and Resilience Plan (3RP) brings together more than 240 partners in a coordinated, region-wide response to assist 9.3 million people in Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt and Iraq – 4.7 million Syrian refugees and over 4.4 million members of the communities hosting them.
Refugees have grown increasingly vulnerable – with the vast majority living below the poverty line and struggling to afford essentials such as food, rent and health care. 70% of people in need are women and children. Half of refugee children are out of school. The approaching winter makes support for refugees and the countries which host them all the more vital.
“Six years into the conflict and still refugees and those who host them need our help – now more than ever,” said Amin Awad, UNHCR Director for the Middle East and North Africa Bureau and Regional Refugee Coordinator for Syria and Iraq. “The 3RP gives us the platform to help restore their dignity and hope for the future – and for that to happen, they need jobs, livelihoods, education and more importantly protection.”
Now heading into its third year of programming, the 3RP has so far supported the governments of countries neighbouring Syria. As the Syria crisis continues unabated, needs continue to mount and refugees and host communities alike are facing increasing hardship. Host communities and governments need sustained support as they shoulder the burden of protecting, providing services and sharing resources with massive numbers of refugees.
“As millions have fled Syria, we have seen extraordinary generosity and solidarity on the part of host countries and communities,” stressed Gustavo Gonzalez, the UNDP Sub-Regional Development Coordinator. “UN Agencies and NGO partners behind the 3RP are committed to providing the very best support we can to help governments and host communities build resilience in the face of one of the world’s most pressing crisis. This 3RP reflects country efforts for more sustainable responses to a protracted crisis.”
The 2017-2018 3RP plan will be formally launched on 24 January 2017 at a conference hosted by the Government of Finland in Helsinki. Key features of the plan include – strong national leadership in the humanitarian response, strengthened accountability, expanded livelihoods and economic opportunities, educational opportunities for children and young people, common regional approaches to protecting the rights, dignity and safety of refugees, and boosting the use of national and local capacities for service delivery. Ensuring access to basic and lifesaving health care for refugees and host communities also features prominently.
“This appeal reflects the magnitude of humanitarian, protection and resilience needs in Syria’s neighbouring countries, which continue to shoulder what is our collective responsibility,” said Mathieu Rouquette, Representative of the Syria INGO Regional Forum. “It is also to uphold our commitment to humanity, to show Syrians, and families who opened their homes that we will continue to support and defend their rights and dignity,”
The conflict in Syria remains the largest humanitarian challenge in the world today. Inside Syria, 13.5 million men, women and children are in urgent need of humanitarian and protection assistance.