Assessment Report: Life-threatening relief gaps in Aleppo City
The first detailed assessment of the humanitarian situation in Aleppo city has found alarming figures: in the 52 visited neighbourhoods (covering about 70% of the pre-conflict population), findings indicate that 2.4 million people are living in areas that are in urgent need of humanitarian assistance, and that over half a million of these have been forced from their homes. The assessment found that fewer than half of the visited areas had received any humanitarian assistance. Approximately one million people have fled the assessed areas and more than half of all private buildings have been damaged or destroyed.
The assessment report was published on 28 March 2013 by the “Assessment Working Group for Northern Syria” in a collaborative effort between a range of humanitarian actors, supported by ECHO, DFID and OFDA, and facilitated by the ACU. The key purpose of the assessment was to provide strategic information on needs, key affected population groups, priority sectors for intervention and to determine where assistance is reaching people in Aleppo city. The assessment was undertaken by teams of researchers who met with a range of key informants, including local relief committees, religious leaders and medical staff.
Key findings include:
The on-going conflict in Aleppo city is causing large numbers of civilian casualties, including women and children. The protection of civilians is urgently required.
Promotion of humanitarian access to all areas is urgently needed in order to allow relief actors to save lives, especially vulnerable groups such as children, women, older people and the disabled.
All neighbourhoods covered in this assessment have significant humanitarian needs, in almost all assessed sectors. A more detailed multi-sectoral response is now required.
There are life-threatening gaps in medical assistance, especially in the South West of Aleppo City. Medicines and vaccines are amongst the top priorities.
Food is increasingly becoming a critical issue. Respondents identified food as their highest priority need overall. Provision of all basic food items are urgently needed in most assessed neighbourhoods.
The risk factors for malnutrition are in place, such as poor feeding practices, displacement, and a high number of children with diarrhoea. Nutritional support is urgently needed for critical vulnerable groups.
The conflict caused widespread damage to infrastructure and houses in Aleppo City. Shelter kits are needed to improve living conditions, especially for IDPs in vacated or unfinished buildings and other hazardous shelter.
Support to solid waste management and garbage collection is needed before the warmer weather starts to minimise public health hazards.
The education system in Aleppo City has collapsed as a direct consequence of the conflict. Interventions are required to allow children to exercise their right to education in a safe learning environment.
There is a need for more comprehensive, systematic and regular assessment to provide an increasingly accurate and timely picture of needs.