Protracted Syrian Crisis 2015
MERCY MALAYSIA NEEDS ASSESSMENT TEAM FOUND CRITICAL UNMET NEEDS IN SYRIAN REFUGEE CAMPS OF LEBANON
MERCY Malaysia appeals for support for the Syrian Winter Relief Fund

KUALA LUMPUR, OCTOBER 26, 2015 – Critical basic and healthcare needs are urgently required in the Syrian Refugee camps of Bekaa Valley, Lebanon. MERCY Malaysia’s Needs Assessment Team that has just returned from Lebanon visited six (6) camps there and found deplorable conditions in some of the camps.
Critical basic needs from the displaced Syrians include winter kits (blankets, warm clothing), hygiene kits, food and healthcare services. While in Bekaa Valley, MERCY Malaysia distributed aid in the form of blankets and food baskets worth USD$ 15,645 to two-hundred and ten (210) families. Additionally, MERCY Malaysia also distributed medical supplies worth USD$ 10,000 to five medical centres there. Similar aids were also distributed to Palestinian refugees that fled Syria due to the war amounting to USD$ 25,000. The total amount spent in Bekaa Valley both for medical supplies and humanitarian aid was USD$ 50,645.

Each refugee camp housed between 200 to 4,000 refugees, with a total of twenty-one (21) camps altogether located in Bekaa Valley. According to the UNHCR, Bekaa Valley hosts Lebanon’s largest official border crossing with Syria in Masnaa. Presently there are 373,429 registered number of refugees in Bekaa governorate alone (30th Sept 2015, UNHCR report). Bekaa Valley has also received the highest number of refugees in Lebanon and possesses the highest number of poor refugee families (54.5%) who live in sub-standard shelters.

The Syrian refugee crisis which stems from the ongoing armed conflict within the region began in the early spring of 2011 and has since changed the geo-political landscape of the region. The civil unrest which was initially between President Bashar al-Assad’s government and rebel fighters has since been complicated even further with the rise of more groups like IS, in the region.

As a result, millions of civilians have been displaced from the country – many of which have ended up in overcrowded refugee camps and live under deplorable conditions. Humanitarian needs in Syria have increased twelve fold since the beginning of the Syrian crisis, with 12.2 million in need of humanitarian assistance, including 7.6 million Internally Displaced People (IDPs) and more than 5.6 million children in need of assistance. An estimated 4.8 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance in hard to reach areas and locations.

Just last year, MERCY Malaysia was able to aid fifty Syrian families with an immediate need of basic winter kits. The families identified were those that had lost the head of the family or were now arrivals to Jarash in Jordan in search of better lives.

“MERCY Malaysia has been responding to the Syrian crisis since it began in 2011. The crisis has escalated to an unimaginable extent, but nonetheless we will not falter in our efforts to garner support and raise awareness in providing humanitarian aid to the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and refugees, especially now with winter approaching,” said YBhg. Dato’ Dr Ahmad Faizal Mohd Perdaus, MERCY Malaysia’s President.

Here we appeal to every good hearted Malaysian to help us help those in critical need of help. Evidently, the Syrian crisis sees no conclusion anytime soon - however, we at MERCY Malaysia will not tire in providing help where needed.

To donate, please visit our website at www.mercy.org.my and click on “I Want To Donate” for the Syrian Winter Relief Fund. The Syrian Winter Relief Fund was launched by HRH Sultan Nazrin Shah of Perak at MERCY Malaysia’s Annual Fundraising Dinner, 16th October, 2015. For further information, you may also follow us on our Facebook and Twitter social media pages.
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