1 October 2013: The Syria crisis has caused a major humanitarian emergency as millions of Syrians have fled to neighbouring countries. Some 731,000 Syrian refugees have sought shelter in Lebanon in 2013. They join more than 45,000 Palestinians and another 20,000 Lebanese returnees who had lived in Syria before the crisis began more than two years ago.
The large influx of refugees and returnees has increased Lebanon’s population by 25 per cent, significantly straining the Lebanese economy and existing services, including health and education. To address the escalating humanitarian crisis, the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) has provided a rapid response grant of US$15,519,380 to six UN agencies and the International Organization for Migration (IOM). The allocations are expected to benefit 150,000 people.
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has received $4,999,990 to address urgent health, nutrition and water, sanitation and hygiene needs. UNICEF will establish emergency latrines, provide hand-washing facilities and ensure access to safe drinking water. UNICEF will also provide child protection in the form of safe spaces for children and women.
Through an allocation of $399,865, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) will provide reproductive health supplies and pregnancy nutritional supplements to reduce reproductive health mortality and morbidity.
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has received $5,035,420 to distribute core relief items, including bedding, kitchen supplies and personal hygiene kits.
Through an allocation of $499,999, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) will replenish medication stocks to ensure urgent medical support for the affected people.
The World Food Programme (WFP) has received $3,484,281 to provide emergency food assistance. WFP will make a special effort to include young children, pregnant and lactating women and disabled people among the targeted refugees.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has received $599,463 to reinforce the health sector in Lebanon by providing medications and surgical supplies.
With an allocation of $500,362, IOM will procure, manage and distribute non-food items, including hygiene kits, baby kits, kitchen sets, mattresses and blankets.