Austrian Contribution to UNHCR Syria Program 2020 - focus Covid-19
Within the framework of the 2020 Syria Humanitarian Response Plan, UNHCR will continue to lead the Protection and Non Food Item/Shelter sectors and will focus on multi-sectoral assistance to strengthen community-based protection and access to civil documentation, provide emergency core relief items and shelter assistance, support livelihood opportunities and promote comprehensive solutions for Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and returnees.
Under its 2020 response plan, UNHCR aims to achieve the following key results:
- 2,000,000 persons of concern (POCs) are provided with protection and other services to support them to cope with the COVID-19 Crisis;
- 64,050 IDPs and affected populations are enrolled in accelerated education programmes;
- 188,000 POCs, including IDPs, returnees and host communities, are assisted with primary health care aervices;
- 3,000 IDPs and affected populations receive Small Start-up Business Projects (SSBP);
- 8,030 awareness raising campaigns on child protection conducted benefiting over 160,000 IDPs and affected populations;
- 9,000 awareness raising campaigns on sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) prevention and response conducted benefiting over 180,000 IDPs and affected populations
Austria’s contribution of EUR 1,657,200 could help support at least 102,323 individuals in areas with large IDP populations with a focus on the crisis in North-West Syria and the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. UNHCR’s key partners include international and national NGOs such as SARC and Syria Trust, a number of UN agencies, and the project is implemented in close coordination with the Government of Syria. In addition, UNHCR operates through a network of 130 community and satellite centers supported by 105 mobile units and a network of nearly 3,000 Outreach volunteers across 12 governorates of the country, including Aleppo and Homs.
- COVID-19 Infection and prevention control through in-kind assistance to 1,000 individuals including IDPs and affected populations;
- Provision of accelerated education programmes: 9,000 IDP children;
- Provision of Small Start-up Business Projects (SSBP): 170 IDPs and affected populations;
- Access to primary health care: 30,000 individuals including IDPs and affected populations;
- 2,000 awareness raising campaigns on child protection benefiting over 40,000 individuals including IDPs and affected populations
- 1,153 awareness raising campaigns on SGBV prevention and response benefiting over 23,060 individuals including IDPs and affected populations
The humanitarian needs in Syria remains staggering in terms of scale, severity and complexity, with significant protection risks continuing in a number of areas across the country. According to OCHA some 11.1 million people are still in need of humanitarian assistance, including 6.1 million people that are internally displaced (as of end December 2019). Some 4.7 million people are in acute need due to a convergence of vulnerabilities resulting from displacement, exposure to hostilities and limited access to basic goods and services. Over 90 per cent of Syrians live below the poverty line and the overall unemployment rate accounts for 50 per cent, disproportionally affecting women and youth. In addition, the COVID-19 pandemic is an unprecedented public health emergency, adding another layer of complexity to the situation. Nearly nine years of conflict have left the Syrian health care system acutely weakened, only around half of its hospitals and primary healthcare centers were fully functional at the end of last year. Together with its partners UNHCR is working in support of the Syrian government to respond to the massive humanitarian needs. UNHCR’s support to IDPs and other crisis-affected populations includes community-based protection, non-formal education, livelihoods support, rehabilitation of health care facilities as well as in-kind support to respond to immediate needs resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.