This Emergency Appeal seeks CHF 3,255,615 (USD 3,076,415 or EUR 2,145,150) in cash, kind, or services to support the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) to assist 260,000 beneficiaries for 12 months, and will be completed by the end of August, 2010. A Final Report will be made available by the end of November 2010 (three months after the end of the operation).
CHF 320,856 (USD 303,195 or EUR 211,415) was allocated from the International Federation's Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) to support this operation. Unearmarked funds to repay DREF are encouraged.
The population in the eastern regions of Syria is suffering from a drought which started in 2006. In the past eight months, higher temperatures and extremely low rainfall destroyed much of the 2008/2009 winter grain. The severity of the drought has now reached a level which has forced people to change their coping techniques and in many cases to leave their villages. According to the government of Syria and the United Nations assessment missions, some 1.3 million inhabitants of Eastern Syria are affected by this disaster, out of which 803,000 have lost almost all of their livelihoods and are facing extreme hardship. This situation has triggered large scale migration and figures for migration range from 40,000 to 60,000 families, with 36,000 of them being from the Al Hasakeh governorate alone.
SARC has mobilized intervention teams and is carrying out ongoing and detailed assessments. The findings of the assessments to date show that the villagers have started to sell their belongings to buy food items. In addition, many parents are withdrawing their children from elementary schools and are sending them to work to secure income for the families.
Based on the situation, this Emergency Appeal responds to a request from SARC, and focuses on providing support to take an appropriate and timely response in delivering assistance and relief in the following sectors: distribution of food items; emergency health and care; water, sanitation and hygiene promotion; capacity building for preparedness and response; and logistics. 140,000 beneficiaries in the most affected areas will be provided with food items; and 70,000 people will be targeted through primary health care services. In addition, ongoing assessments will determine the potential need for further assistance in the form of Emergency Response Units (ERUs). Distribution of hygiene kits, training of volunteers and staff, carrying out education campaigns and psycho-social support activities are also planned under the Appeal, as well as enhancing the disaster management capacity of the two branches in the affected areas; namely Deir az Zor and Al Hasakeh. An evaluation will be conducted once the operation is completed.
The International Federation, together with SARC, wish to emphasise that as indicated in table no.1 and in the Emergency Appeal text as a whole, the needs in the region are far greater than the response planned in this Appeal. Coordination and cooperation with the government of Syria, various UN agencies and other institutions will be vital.