Syrian crisis

After more than eight years of conflict in Syria, children are paying the heaviest price.

Syria. A boy stands in the street.
UNICEF/UNI214250/Souleiman

Tens of thousands displaced in northeast Syria

On 11 October 2019 in the Syrian Arab Republic, a woman holds a child as families displaced from Ras Al-ain arrive in Tal Tamer, 75km southeast Ras of Al-ain, having fled escalating violence.
UNICEF/UNI214259/Souleiman

Around 74,000 people – including an estimated 31,000 children – remain displaced following an escalation of violence in the northeast of the country in early October, while more than 15,000 people have fled to neighbouring Iraq.

The hostilities have damaged or caused the closure of critical basic services including schools, health and water facilities. UNICEF and partners have been providing clean drinking water, family hygiene kits, nutritional supplies, and other assistance.

Many of those displaced, especially children, are also in need of psychological support after witnessing shelling, fighting and explosions in their home communities. UNICEF and partners are therefore continuing to provide psychosocial support, specialized child protection services, awareness raising on the risks of mines and explosive ordinances, and other child protection issues affecting internally displaced persons in collective shelters.


Read the latest on the situation in northeast Syria

 

Syrian crisis background: What you need to know

What is happening in the Syrian Arab Republic?

After more than eight years of conflict, the Syria crisis continues to have a huge impact on children inside Syria, across the region and beyond. Every Syrian child has been impacted by the violence, displacement, severed family ties and lack of access to vital services. This has had a huge psychological impact on children.

The physical devastation in Syria is massive, with schools, hospitals and water treatment facilities destroyed. Meanwhile, an estimated 2.6 million children remain displaced inside Syria, while some 2.5 million children are living as refugees, in neighbouring countries.

How have children been affected?

The Syrian crisis remains first and foremost a protection crisis: 2018 was the deadliest single year for children since the start of the war. Grave violations of children’s rights – recruitment, abductions, killing and maiming continue unabated. Unexploded ordnance is a deadly threat for millions of Syrian children, while around 5 million children still require some form of humanitarian assistance, including nearly half a million in hard-to-reach areas.

What is UNICEF doing to help children in the Syrian crisis?

UNICEF and partners are on the ground in Syria and across the region working to protect children, to help them cope with the impact of conflict and to resume their childhoods. This includes improving access to education and psychosocial support services to help children and caregivers to recover from trauma and to restore a sense of normalcy, as well as delivering critical humanitarian assistance in hard-to-reach areas. Read more about UNICEF’s work and results in the country.


Check here for the latest Situation Reports.


 

Syrian crisis snapshot

What UNICEF is doing in Syria

UNICEF and partners are on the ground in Syria and across the region working to protect children, to help them cope with the impact of conflict and to resume their childhoods. This includes improving access to education and psychosocial support services to help children and caregivers to recover from trauma and to restore a sense of normalcy.

UNICEF delivers critical humanitarian assistance, such as vaccines and other health and nutrition items across the country, including accessing hard-to-reach areas. Meanwhile, UNICEF and partners are improving school facilities, training teachers and repairing water and sanitation facilities.

Read UNICEF’s 2019 Humanitarian Action for Children Syrian appeal

Results for children in Syria

From January to December 2018, UNICEF and partners:

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