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Syria crisis

Syria is experiencing the world's largest displacement crisis with 11 million people forced to flee their homes.

Coronavirus is now starting to spread and people urgently need basic essentials to protect themselves.

After nine years of civil war in Syria, people continue to face significant challenges with an estimated 11.7 million people needing humanitarian assistance. There are 6.2 million people who are internally displaced, with many living in overcrowded camps where there is little food or clean water.

Oxfam and local partners have been on the ground in Syria providing clean water, cash and hygiene essentials to those who have fled their homes, and to Syrian refugees in Lebanon and Jordan. In the last year, we have helped over one million Syrian people.

Please help people in Syria and around the world protect themselves from coronavirus.

Donate now 

Last updated: 14/07/2020


Omar and his 2-year-old son. Who left their native city of Hassaka, Syria, where they could no longer live because of the war.

What Oxfam is doing to help Syrian refugees

The situation

In the cramped conditions millions of Syrians are living in, with limited clean water and soap, coronavirus could spread fast and people have little protection. The country's healthcare system is already under huge stress - of the 111 public hospitals in Syria, only 57 are fully functioning. A London School of Economics study predicts once the number of cases passes 6,500, with 5% of these needing ICU, the healthcare system is likely to collapse.

The north west of Syria remains very unstable, with increasing military offence strikes in Southern Idlib and northern Hama. Communities are very vulnerable - there are reports of destruction of hospitals and schools, along with homes. 1.8 million people fled their homes in 2019.

Sanitation and hygiene services such as waste removal systems are limited or non-existent, which has a huge impact on public health. Fuel and electricity are limited, food prices have soared and it is estimated that eighty percent of the population are living in poverty.

Syria also faces a severe hunger crisis with people on the brink of starvation, partly as a result of this pandemic.

It is a difficult and dangerous place for humanitarian assistance - in February 2020, two of Oxfam's local staff members were killed in an attack in Dar'a governorate in Southern Syria.

Despite this, Oxfam and local partners are on the ground now. Since the start of the crisis we've helped over 2 million Syrian people with aid including clean water, cash, essential clothing items, and support to help make a living and grow nutritious food. Now Syrians are facing the deadly threat of coronavirus, they need your help to stay protected.

You can help. Donate now.

Photo: Islam Mardini/Oxfam

Oxfam is working with its partner, Syrian Society for Social Development, to distribute essential hygiene supplies in rural Hama in response to the pandemic.

Photo: Oxfam

Call for a global ceasefire

The conflict in Syria is making it difficult to effectively prevent or respond to the devastating impacts of coronavirus. A global ceasefire is essential if we are to prevent further catastrophe from coronavirus. Sign our Petition and call on the Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab to take leadership, save lives, and open a window for inclusive, locally-led peace and justice.

Sign our petition 

Getting water to people in Syria

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