13 August 2012
Over the past three weeks, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the Syrian Arab Red Crescent have distributed food parcels to more than 125,000 people across Syria. Most of these people are living in shelters, after fleeing their homes.
The 25,000 food parcels were given to people in and around Damascus and in Aleppo, Homs, Hama, Idlib, Lattakia, Hassakeh and Raqqa.
Many civilians, especially in the governorates of Damascus and Aleppo, are struggling to stay safe. Thousands of people from around Aleppo have already left their homes and taken shelter in public buildings. Over 80 schools in several parts of the governorate are currently hosting civilians who have fled the fighting.
Extremely difficult conditions
Marianne Gasser, the head of the ICRC delegation in Syria, said: "Aleppo is of particular concern to the ICRC, not only because of its distant geographical location, but because the Syrian Arab Red Crescent had to suspend most of its activities owing to extreme danger on the ground. Still, dozens of volunteers have continued to work under extremely difficult conditions to meet the growing needs of the civilian population."
The ICRC and the Syrian Arab Red Crescent are the only major agencies able to work across frontlines in Syria. As well as providing food, in the past three weeks their response has included:
- delivering enough supplies to treat between 250 and 1,000 casualties to Aleppo, depending on the severity of the wounds
- providing primary health care and medicines in schools hosting displaced people in Damascus
- improving access to safe drinking water in ten schools, hosting an estimated 2,000 people
- improving access to safe drinking water and sanitary conditions in Damascus and rural Damascus for over 68,000 people who recently fled the fighting
- continuing to ensure that more than 300,000 people accommodated in over 100 schoolhouses in Homs have enough clean water
- delivering nearly 10,000 mattresses to school and other public buildings hosting displaced people in and around Damascus, and in Aleppo and Homs
- delivering 2,000 sets of hygiene items to displaced people in Aleppo.
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