From the onset of the Syrian crisis in 2011, WFP has been on the frontlines doing whatever it takes to deliver food to millions of people who need it.
Within Syria, every month, WFP uses over 3,000 trucks to deliver emergency food assistance to hundreds of distribution points in all 14 governorates. In besieged and hard-to reach areas, where regular deliveries are not possible and humanitarian needs are extremely high, WFP employs creative solutions, including inter-agency cross-line convoys, as well as airlifts and high-altitude airdrops. WFP also conducts cross-border deliveries from Jordan and Turkey to bring food assistance to opposition-held areas in northern and southern Syria. Working with 47 local and international partners, WFP distributes food to between 4 and 5 million people every month.
However, continuous fighting has forced close to 5 million people to flee across Syria’s borders in search of safety elsewhere. Life outside Syria has pushed many refugee families into extreme poverty, leaving them unable to put food on the table or send their children to school. Some of the most vulnerable refugees are taking extreme measures to cope, including returning to Syria or leaving host countries for elsewhere.
WFP supports almost 1.6 million of the most vulnerable Syrian refugees sheltering in Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Egypt and Iraq. Through its voucher programme, WFP is empowering families to purchase food of their choice from local shops, including fresh produce, dairy products, meat and chicken.
Through these programmes, WFP has injected over US$ 2 billion into the economies of the countries neighbouring Syria. As the largest humanitarian food voucher programme worldwide, it is strengthening local markets, creating jobs, and increasing demand for local produce.
What the World Food Programme is doing to respond to the Syria emergency
Every month, WFP is providing family food rations to more than 4 million displaced and conflict-affected people across Syria. Each ration is enough to feed a family of five. In neighbouring countries, WFP assists Syrian refugees and vulnerable host communities with electronic vouchers.
Resilience and livelihoods
Within Syria, WFP supports activities to rehabilitate bakeries, restore and enhance bee-keeping, promote local production of specialized fortified foods and create employment opportunities at packaging and warehouses facilities for WFP operations. Elsewhere, activities include small-scale livelihoods and cash-for-assets programmes in Lebanon and training opportunities in Jordan.
WFP supports the education of Syrian children by providing nutritious snacks in almost 900 schools across Syria, as well as through school meals initiatives in Egypt, Jordan and Lebanon.
Within Syria, WFP fights malnutrition by providing nutrition support to young children, pregnant women and nursing mothers.
WFP is struggling to meet the urgent food needs of more than five million displaced people in Syria and in neighbouring countries every month. Due to funding shortfalls in Syria, WFP has already been forced to reduce the calories in the food basket. Given the 2-3 months procurement lead time to have the commodities in-country ready for distribution, WFP urgently requires additional funding in order to avoid taking more serious measures, such as reducing the number of beneficiaries.