UNDP outlines 2016 plans for Syria crisis response

Jan 29, 2016

Syrian refugee children play in a Jordanian community as Zaatari camp is seen in the background, in the village of Zaatari, Jordan. Photo: Salah Malkawi/UNDP

UNDP plans show continued focus on resilience, livelihoods.

New York City - UNDP is planning a continued focus on resilience and livelihoods in its work on behalf of the most vulnerable in Syria and in neighboring countries struggling to cope with the impacts of the Syria crisis.

UNDP’s work is integrated in the two crisis response plans coordinating the international community’s efforts around the Syria crisis:   the Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP) 2016 for support inside Syria, and the Regional Refugee and Resilience Plan (3RP) 2016-2017 for programmes benefitting refugees and host communities in Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Iraq and Egypt.

On 4 February Germany, Kuwait, Norway, the United Kingdom and the United Nations are co-hosting the Supporting Syrians and the Region Conference hosted in London. The Conference will be a key opportunity to galvanize international support for a robust response to the Syria Crisis that bridges humanitarian and development approaches to boost resilience in the region.

In Syria UNDP’s proposals include an expansion of ongoing work in support of the most vulnerable communities, improving food security, strengthening service delivery, promoting grassroots economic activity, boosting job creation, supporting small businesses and removing solid waste and debris. The required funding for these activities in 2016 is US$62m.

In neighboring countries  struggling to host record numbers of refugees and provide basic services such as water, waste management, health care and education, UNDP’s work is focused on boosting livelihoods, strengthening local and national capacity for basic services, , and fostering social stability in host communities.  The required funding for these activities is $420 million, representing 37 percent of the total 3RP needs, up from 29 percent in 2015.

In total UNDP’s funding needs for 2016 amount to $482m.

These appeals are part of a growing international consensus, long-championed by UNDP, that recognizes that addressing livelihoods and resilience now is a key part of addressing the needs of vulnerable people and communities, preventing radicalization, and paving a way to recovery in the medium and long-terms. It also addresses the growing consensus that the countries and communities which have generously hosted Syrian refugees deserve more support for their overall contribution to regional and global peace and stability. Finally the support for resilience is intend to give vulnerable people more hope for the future in their own countries. As the co-leading organization in the 3RP, UNDP has been at the forefront of championing resilience and building the partnerships around crisis-affected governments, organizations and NGOs implementing the response.

 “Conventional approaches of “relief now, development later” do not work in response to the Syria crisis or other similar protracted crises,” said Helen Clark, Administrator of UNDP. “Refugees, host communities and internally displaced people in Syria need livelihoods. They need basic services, like health, education, water, sanitation, electricity, and garbage removal. And they need hope for a better future.

These plans also build on momentum established by the three previous international pledging conferences, hosted by Kuwait, and the Resilience Development Forum hosted by UNDP and the Government of Jordan in November, 2015.

 “UNDP is ready to scale-up its work in support of a brighter future for Syrians and their neighbors,” said Sima Bahous, Assistant Secretary-General and Director of UNDP’s Regional Bureau for Arab States. “We hope that the ‘London Conference’ can stand as an important turning point for consolidating international support for a response to the Syria crisis that creates jobs, boosts livelihoods, and addresses people’s needs so that once peace is achieved, it can be sustained.” 

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