11 December 2015
Volunteers have distributed much-needed aid in an area of Homs that had been cut off by conflict.
Our colleagues from the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) entered the al-Waer suburb at the weekend with 29 trucks of relief items.
They delivered relief supplies including food, blankets, winter clothing and hygiene kits.
Al-Waer has been cut off for months due to the conflict. Those trapped inside have been in dire need of help.
The Red Crescent convoy was the first to enter the suburb since a truce was declared.
It represents one of the largest deliveries of aid since November 2014, the last time SARC was able to deliver assistance.
The aid will help 6,000 families, around 30,000 people, for the next four weeks.
Of the 300,000 people that lived in the suburb before the conflict, an estimated 75,000 remain.
These families need urgent help to cope with the rapidly falling winter temperatures.
SARC also transported relief items on behalf of the Danish Refugee Council, UNHCR, Unicef, WFP and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC).
Abdulnaser Nashnashi, logistics leader of the convoy, said: “It was a long and difficult day for us all. We worked long into the night in cold weather. In spite of this, our volunteers worked on without rest.
“Entering the suburb and providing much-needed relief on 5 December, International Volunteer Day, was something to be proud of. It shows the spirit of all our volunteer family.”
SARC is able to gain access to these challenging areas thanks to the recognised neutral and impartial approach of the Red Cross Movement.
Safe access can involve weeks or even months of preparation, and there is often only a small window of opportunity to help those in need.
Also this week, SARC volunteers helped to evacuate 520 people from al-Waer.
The evacuation, which was done in cooperation with the UN, began on Wednesday morning and lasted until Thursday.