After 8 years of conflict, the needs remain high in Syria. 5.6 million people are considered vulnerable in terms of housing. More than 7 million children are identified as needing educational support, with more than 1 in 3 schools being either damaged or destroyed. The access to water, sanitation and hygiene continues to be a daily challenge for 10.7 million people in the country. The economic situation and international sanctions, as well as destruction of infrastructures during the conflict, and the lack of opportunities, contribute to the high level of existing poverty: 9.9 million people are vulnerable in terms of livelihood.
Population movements remain important, although less than in 2018: more than 460,000 internal displacements have been registered during the course of 2019. The military operations conducted in Northern Syria, and the Turkish offensive in late 2019, kept causing many population displacements. In parallel, the number of Syrian returning back home keeps increasing: there were around 494,000 returns of internally displaced Syrian reported in 2019. These populations, returning to former conflict areas now stabilized, are particularly affected, during the displacement but also after they return in their area of origin, where infrastructures have been massively damaged and the access to basic services is now limited.
Description of the mission
Première Urgence Internationale has had a presence in Syria since May, 2008. The country is in the grip of an international crisis since March, 2011. Première Urgence Internationale obtained in 2012 the authorization to provide a humanitarian aid to Syrians victims of the conflict with the local Red Crescent. Première Urgence Internationale is therefore part of the few international NGOs operating in Syria, and is now intervening in 10 governorates in the country.
Premiere Urgence Internationale in action
In 2019, Première Urgence Internationale has continued to implement its so-called “integrated approach”, to respond the multi-sector needs of civilian populations while creating a leverage effect at community level. The NGO provides an emergency response to internally displaced people, focusing on the rehabilitation of shelters and the access to water and sanitation. At the same time, the mission intervenes in stabilized areas, in order to generate the conditions allowing people to meet their basic needs by themselves, and therefore gradually return to normal life.
Première Urgence Internationale is rehabilitating the flats of displaced populations, the water and sanitation networks, as well as other essential public infrastructures: healthcare centres, industrial bakeries… The mission is also facilitating the access to education, with after-school academic upgrading activities, rehabilitation of schools, and training of teachers. Première Urgence Internationale’s teams are also reinforcing individual autonomy through professional skills training, in line with the local labour market, and through individual support to entrepreneurs and businesses, aiming at reconstructing and boosting their economic activity.
Première Urgence Internationale is working at the frontline to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Syria
On the 15th of March 2020, the Syrian crisis entered its 10th year. A week later, the first confirmed COVID-19 case was reported in Syria. The 9 years of conflict have already left the country battered, but the COVID-19 pandemic has presented yet another challenge for an overburdened and fragile social protection system. Against this backdrop, Première Urgence Internationale was one of the first organizations that responded quickly to address the emerging urgent needs in Syria. With the support of partners, the NGO has worked across its sectors to contribute to common efforts working on preventing a spiraling COVID-19 outbreak in Syria.
Helping Syrian families to move back to their houses
In Syria, Première Urgence Internationale provides a humanitarian aid to populations victims of the conflict, through an integrated approach. The NGO addresses the needs in water, hygiene, sanitation, and psychological support. It also contributes to improve the conditions of hosting of the displaced populations inside the country.