Syria has been ravaged by war and poverty. In November 2011, Syria Relief and Development (SRD) was established in direct response to the onset of this crisis. As of December 2015, more than 13.5 million Syrians were in need of humanitarian assistance and nearly half of these people were children. The crisis in Syria has left its people particularly vulnerable during the harsh winter months due to shortages in essential supplies and the rise in winter-related illnesses. Families that live in conflict zones often cannot obtain or afford the necessary winter items to keep them warm and healthy, especially in besieged areas that lie beyond the reach of humanitarian aid. Through the delivery of humanitarian aid in the form of medical programs, essential care, and food, SRD has successfully distributed over $24.5 million in aid in Syria and refugee communities in Jordan.
A 2017 grant from the Cultures of Resistance Network supported SRD’s solar panel installation as part of the organization’s Shelter Project. The Shelter Project addresses the shelter needs of internally displaced persons (IDP) in the the Tal Shihab area of the Dara’a Governorate of Southern Syria through the rehabilitation of the Tal Shihab plantation. After the onset of the armed crisis, locals converted the site from an industrial plantation to an informal collective shelter that currently hosts twenty-one IDP households (HH) consisting of 107 internally displaced persons. The shelter’s infrastructure has rendered living conditions extremely poor and in some spaces uninhabitable. This project aims to renovate the rooms, kitchens, bathrooms, and hallways that are used and occupied by the IDPs to better meet their basic shelter needs.
A 2015 grant from the Cultures of Resistance Network helped Syrians overcome the harsh winter months by supporting SRD’s #GiveWarmth campaign. SRD distributed winter care packages to 5,000 vulnerable individuals, or about 1,000 Syrian families inside of Syria and Jordan. Winter care packages equipped with blankets, thermal clothing, cooking gas containers, candles, fuel, mattresses, and non-perishable food items served the most vulnerable Syrians, including refugees, internally displaced persons, and Syrians living in besieged areas inside Syria.