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Since the uprising in Syria began in March 2011, the bloody battle between forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad and those opposed to his rule has wreaked havoc on the lives of many families.
Children and innocent civilians are caught up in the fighting and many families have fled their homes in fear. According to The Syrian Arab Red Crescent, there are as many as 1.5 million homeless people inside the country. Hundreds of thousands of families have also fled to neighbouring countries such as Jordan, where over two-thirds of camp residents are young children. Many families left home without any supplies and little money. With no sense of security or stability, parents are unable to provide for their children
Stepping up Emergency Relief
SOS Children has been working in Syria since 1980. In August 2012, the charity increased their work in Damascus to help nearly 4,000 families affected by the crisis.
As the situation for families worsens further, and the harsh conditions of wintertime worsening suffering, the charity are rapidly expanding their work in the country further. At least 10,000 people displaced from their homes by the violence will receive assistance from the charity, across at least three locations.
Support will include food packages for vulnerable children and their families. They will also be offered medical treatments and nutritional support. Children will receive psychological care in “child friendly” spaces in refugee camps, where they can work through the trauma they have experienced with qualified staff. The charity will ensure that they can continue their education despite the difficult conditions, by paying for school fees and educational equipment.
A life of fear
Amjad (12) had to flee his home after shells were falling in front of his house. He says: "I no longer want to go back home, I am afraid of going back there. I used to hide in the kitchen between the oven and the refrigerator on the floor closing my ears with my fingers so I don't hear the shelling and shooting. I will never go back again to our old house, we were so scared there."
Through SOS Children's Emergency Relief Programme, the charity will support families such as Amjad’s to cope with the present crisis and rebuild their lives.