WFP Syria Country Brief, May 2020

Situation Report
Originally published


In Numbers

  • 4.3 m people assisted in May 2020 (based on dispatches)

  • 52,210 mt of food assistance delivered

  • US$ 3 m in cash-based transfers made

  • US$ 197 m six-months net funding requirement (June 2020 – November 2020)

Operational Updates

• In May, WFP delivered food and nutrition assistance to 4.3 million people across its General Food Assistance (GFA), School Feeding, Nutrition, and Livelihoods and Resilience-activities in Syria.

• WFP provided some 4.2 million people across all 14 Syrian governorates with GFA. Of this, 23 percent was delivered through the cross-border operation from Turkey to areas of Idlib and western rural Aleppo governorates not accessible from inside Syria, sufficient for nearly 1 million people. May cross-border dispatches were noticeably lower than in previous cycles as WFP cooperating partners were already sufficiently stocked with enough commodities (delivered under previous dispatch cycles) to reach a target of 1.5 million people in May.

• As part of the COVID-19 response, WFP in May continued its collaboration with UNICEF for the inclusion of soap in all the GFA rations, as well as drawing kits to children in 200,000 families across UNICEF-targeted areas.

• WFP started its support to UNICEF and UNFPA through the inclusion of hygiene items in the WFP’s CBT programmes supporting pregnant and lactating women and girls and out-of-school children. WFP has also made hygiene items available to beneficiaries targeted with CBT support under its liveilhoods programme.

• Food prices continued to soar in May, with the average nationwide price of the WFP reference food basket increasing by 11 percent from April. The price of the food basket had by the end of May increased by 133 percent year-on-year, reaching the highest levels recorded since the start of the crisis at 15.8 times the five-year pre-crisis average.

• WFP continued to assist affected populations in north-western Syria via the cross-border operation from Turkey. In May, WFP reached 1.3 million people with GFA. WFP also assisted some 196,500 people with ready-to-eat rations (RTEs) in a one-off distribution round. In anticipation of the 10 July expiry of the Security Council resolution which authorizes cross-border operations, WFP will pre-position close to three months of stock.

• In May, WFP introduced a new distribution modality in IDP camps of north-eastern Syria to avoid crowding during distributions and limit COVID-19 exposure risk. Under the new modality, WFP is distributing two months’ worth of food rations at a time, with May and June rations distributed in one round that started in mid-May.