The United States is pursuing every avenue to get humanitarian relief into Syria and is engaged in focused diplomatic efforts to secure full and unfettered access for humanitarian organizations to reach those in need. The United States is providing an additional $12.2 million in humanitarian assistance to support the people of Syria, bringing the total amount of U.S. emergency aid to nearly $25 million. This assistance is supporting international and non-governmental humanitarian partners, including:
- $10.5 million to the World Food Program (WFP);
- $8.5 million to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR);
- $3 million to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC); and
- $2.8 million to non-governmental organizations (NGO).
U.S. assistance includes medical supplies and other humanitarian relief for displaced and vulnerable and besieged Syrian communities. As part of a growing international effort to quickly and effectively deliver aid into Syria as access and conditions allow, we are also bolstering existing regional food and relief supply stockpiles and the logistical capacity needed to deliver these humanitarian supplies.
UNHCR is delivering critical medical services and supplies, food, water, blankets, hygiene kits, and heaters to the Syrian people. This funding will provide additional support for displaced Syrians residing in Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey, and Iraq, as well as support for host families who are sheltering displaced Syrians due to the ongoing violence.
On March 14, 2012, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) issued a special alert voicing serious concern over the state of food security, especially for vulnerable groups. WFP estimates that 1.4 million people have become food insecure as a result of the violence.
WFP is providing food assistance to 100,000 people affected by the civil conflict in 11 governorates in Syria. The WFP operation provides rations to displaced Syrians and host families, households that have lost breadwinners or livelihoods, female-headed households, and unaccompanied minors. Over 94 percent of targeted beneficiaries – some 85,000 people – received food assistance in the latest cycle of WFP distributions, and the remaining distributions were delayed due to insecurity. As of March 29, approximately 30,400 beneficiaries in nine governorates have been reached in the current distribution cycle that began on March 15. Several of the worst-affected areas within the governorates remain inaccessible due to insecurity, but distributions will resume as security permits.