Syrian crisis

After nine years of conflict, children continue to pay the heaviest price.

Syria. A child stands at a shelter.
UNICEF/UNI325082/Albam

Syrian crisis: What you need to know

What is happening in the Syrian Arab Republic?

After nine years of conflict, the Syrian 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.

Since December, more than 960,000 people, including more than half a million children, have been displaced by violence in the northwest of the country. In Idlib Province, many families have suffered multiple displacements and are increasingly desperate, with no way to safely escape the violence. Tens of thousands of children and their families have been living in tents and in the open air amid very cold weather and rains. 

The physical devastation in Syria has been massive, with schools, hospitals and water treatment facilities destroyed. Meanwhile, some 2.5 million children are living as refugees in neighbouring countries. The scale, severity and complexity of the humanitarian needs remain extensive.

How have children been affected?

The Syrian crisis remains first and foremost a protection crisis. 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.

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.

Working with partners, UNICEF continues to deliver assistance including hygiene kits, safe drinking water, warm clothes for winter, and screening and treatment of malnutrition. In addition, UNICEF is working with partners to provide vaccines, particularly for children who have previously missed out on their vaccinations. 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 2020 Humanitarian Action for Children Syrian appeal

Results for children in Syria

From January to August 2019, UNICEF and partners:

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