Emergency Humanitarian Assistance, Protection and Livelihood support for Vulnerable Populations in Syria and Lebanon
Almost a decade into civil war, the Syria context continues to be complex and volatile with different territories of the country in flux between recovery, ongoing conflict, or descension towards conflict following a period of stability. Some urban areas such as Homs and Aleppo have sustained a few years of recovery, although IDP movement continues to be severe and fluid. Both these areas have also experienced an influx of returnees who often come home to severely damaged or destroyed homes, infrastructure, livelihoods, and social structures. Beyond this, purchasing power for the average Syrian household remains very low and there continues to be a dependency on assistance. For this reason, the recovery process is slow and uncertain.
The Lebanese context is just as complex as Syria, absorbing the knock-on effects of a huge swell in the refugee population while now experiencing its own political and economic crisis independent of and yet tied to that in Syria. The future is increasingly uncertain - the gradual deterioration of political and economic structures began to accelerate approximately 18 months ago, and the impacts are widespread. Instead of looking to options for integration and self-reliance, Syrian refugees are facing a dire choice between living in deep poverty, often with the inability to work, in Lebanon, or to face immense protection concerns and consider a return to Syria. For the Lebanese host community, more and more of the population is falling under the poverty line as the economy continues to shrink. Without a functioning market, increasing inflation, and political uncertainty, humanitarian assistance is becoming more critical and necessary.
Over the past year, Mission East has developed its Syria Regional Programme into one that prioritizes self-reliance and resilience-building and contributes to emergency response while making a connection to overall sustainable recovery. The overall objective of Mission East’s Syria Regional Programme is to meet critical, lifesaving needs of vulnerable populations while contributing to early recovery and reducing long-term reliance on humanitarian assistance. With this, Mission East can ensure that the needs of communities on the run or exposed to sudden onset crises receive timely and appropriate assistance, while the needs of communities on the initial pathway to recovery and rehabilitation also receive critical support. Mission East will continue to build a programme focused mainly on the livelihoods sector, both urban and rural, mainstreaming protection services, and building the capacity of local partners.
Mission East’s Syria Regional Programme, working in both Syria and Lebanon aims to contribute to change in:
- The ability of vulnerable communities to meet their most pressing, critical needs with both immediate, lifesaving solutions and more sustainable, resilience-building solutions, and
- The conflict-affected population’s ability to support themselves economically (opportunity for income generation) and decreased reliance on humanitarian assistance
Mission East contributes to the above changes by carrying out a multi-component program with clear targeting for the different areas of intervention, which is well-coordinated with other actors, and which lays emphasis on recovery and sustainability by providing both long-term and quick-impact interventions, as well as working through and with local partners.