Introduction to the Humanitarian Situation in Winter in Northwest Syria:
Approximately 4.5 million people in northwest Syria are facing significant challenges during the winter season. These challenges include expected snowstorms, plummeting temperatures, strong winds, heavy rains, and floods, which have a major impact on their lives and humanitarian conditions.
Currently, there are about 1,527 displacement sites in the region, hosting approximately 1.9 million displaced individuals, most of whom are women and children. With the onset of winter, their needs increase significantly.
According to camp management and coordination, there are currently:
- – 17 sites hosting 31,726 people at a “catastrophic” vulnerability level.
- – 240 sites hosting 312,888 people at a “very poor” vulnerability level.
- – 617 sites hosting 849,714 people at a “poor” vulnerability level.
Most of the displaced people live in overcrowded camps that lack sufficient infrastructure, including heating, electricity, water supplies, and sanitation.
Tens of thousands of families with the greatest needs were not covered in the 2022-2023 winter response plan published last September.
Moreover, approximately 306 camps have been flooded. Unfortunately, the population affected by the ongoing shelling and earthquake has increased significantly, leading to a worsening of their humanitarian situation. This situation has led many residents to flee to the northern areas of Idlib and Aleppo, with about 74 emergency shelter centers set up to accommodate them.
Furthermore, the number of displaced families to previously established camps has increased. It is concerning that 79% of these camps are exposed to fire, flood, and storm risks.
According to shelter and non-food items sectors and camp management and coordination, the winter needs for this year are extremely substantial, and there is a significant funding gap hindering the fulfillment of these needs.
Camp residents rely on various types of heating fuel, which is applicable across all areas of northwest Syria. Due to these differences in the heating fuel types used, it is recommended to provide assistance in the form of cash or allow beneficiaries to choose the fuel type that best suits their needs. This aims to avoid challenges related to selling the assistance or purchasing a new stove that matches the fuel type they use. Assistance should include various types of heating fuel.
With appropriate support, the situation can be improved, but we must consider that children living in old tents will receive only 6-8 hours of heating per day during the winter season. This reflects the magnitude of the challenges facing the population in these areas and the need to increase support to ensure their comfort and safety during the cold months.”