Oxfam's response to Telegraph article about Syria donations
Grace Cahill Humanitarian Press Officer
5th Oct 2013
Reacting to the Daily Telegraph's story "Charity Millions Going to Syrian Terror Groups", Oxfam's Humanitarian Director Jane Cocking said:
"The Telegraph's claim that it is impossible to know where aid ends up is untrue.
Oxfam has many years of experience distributing foreign aid in complex situations like the conflict in Syria and has a comprehensive system of checks in place to ensure money gets to the people who need it.
"Our model of humanitarian assistance is based upon a strong network of partner organisations and Oxfam teams on the ground so we can access people in need. These organisations have a good understanding of local politics and the powers that are in play in the areas in which they work. Before working with partners, we always put them through strict vetting procedures to ensure the organisation or their leadership is not linked to terrorism. Then when we begin working with them we conduct extensive training in our humanitarian principles to make clear the distribution of
aid is based on need and must be handed out impartially.
"Our progress in getting assistance to the right people is continuously checked and evaluated. Where possible we make regular visits to determine where the aid is going and make sure it is going to those who need it most. We also talk to the people who should have received the aid and ask them whether they did receive it and whether it was what they needed.
"The vital assistance Oxfam gives to the millions of people suffering both inside Syria and in neighbouring countries would not be possible without public help. We profoundly respect the public's show of solidarity with the Syrian people through donations by putting strict checks in place and keeping our response under constant review to ensure aid does not go to terror groups."