Syria – situation report update
PDA is responding to the rising violence that continues to impact Syrians. Approximately 6.8 million people are in need of immediate humanitarian assistance due to the ongoing conflict.
There are more than 2 million Syrian refugees being hosted across five countries — Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Iraq and Egypt — each with its own set of domestic priorities and concerns in which events in Syria and the influx of refugees are increasingly playing a central role.
Many who have crossed the Syrian border are experiencing a different type of crisis: life in a refugee camp where the needs to provide water, sanitation, food, shelter, health care and security greatly stretches the organizations providing these services.
The Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan has become the second largest refugee camp in the world (behind the Dadaab camp in Kenya) and has become Jordan’s fourth largest city. Over 60% of the camp’s population is children, and many of the households are headed by women. Recent numbers estimate that almost half of the number of refugees — a staggering one million — are children.
Read a partial report from the August/September OCHA Humanitarian Bulletin focused on Syria.
Presbyterian Disaster Assistance (PDA) continues, through the National Evangelical (Presbyterian) Synod of Syria and Lebanon and the ACT Alliance, to provide food, hygiene kits, bedding, support to health workers, provision of psychosocial counselors, and support for students to continue their education.
The Reverend Gradye Parsons, Stated Clerk of the General Assembly, joined with more than 20 ecumenical colleagues, in calling on the United States government to keep its attention on the Syrian Civil War and act accordingly to bring stability and peace to the region; and on August 30, 2013, issued a statement in the wake of the escalating violence in Syria. PC(USA) has also issued a Call to Action in which The Rev. Parsons urges people to personally engage Congress about Syria and to pray.
How you can help
Stand in the GAP for disaster survivors as you Give, Act, and Pray.
Give. Please generously share your financial blessings by designating gifts to DR000081 – Middle East. Write “Syria” on the reference line if mailing a check.
- The PC(USA) Office of Public Witness has issued an Action Alert on Syria to oppose military action. Visit their blog to learn how you can advocate for this action.
- More than 26,100 Gift of the Heart school kits have been sent to provide some of the basic supplies needed for children in refugee camps. Learn how to make the kits.
Pray. At this difficult and uncertain time, PDA asks that you keep the people of Syria in your thoughts and prayers. Please pray:
- For all those whose lives have been and continue to be affected,
- For those who have lost friends and family during this crisis,
- For those who are displaced,
- For those working to deliver humanitarian assistance,
- For an end to violence and the beginning of negotiations for a solution that meets the democratic aspiration of the Syrian people,
- That access will be open for humanitarian assistance to get through to those in need.