KOICA Allocates US$3.7 Million through UNDP to Promote Social Cohesion through Participatory Area-based Recovery in Syria

December 3, 2023

Amman, 03 December 2023 – The Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Syria announce their new partnership by signing of a contribution agreement worth US$3.7 million to enhance social cohesion and economic empowerment through participatory area-based recovery. The signing ceremony, held in Amman on 03 December 2023, was attended by the Country Director of KOICA in Jordan, Seo Dongsung, and UNDP Resident Representative in Syria, Sudipto Mukerjee. 

The Promoting Social Cohesion and Integrating Violence-Affected Local Communities through Participatory Area-Based Recovery in Syria project aims to empower vulnerable people, including women, youth, the internally displaced and marginalized groups, socially and economically in the targeted communities of Aleppo, Homs and Deir ez-Zour. Around 76,500 people are estimated to benefit from the project, with 15,000 directly, including at least 50 per cent being women and girls, and four per cent persons with disabilities.

“The Government of the Republic of Korea has been providing humanitarian assistance to the people of Syria since the outbreak of the crisis. This year, the Syrian people are facing more challenges than ever before, including the aftermath of an earthquake and economic crisis. Against this backdrop, the Korean Government has decided to provide additional support through UNDP, which we sincerely hope will contribute to improving the livelihoods of people and local communities in Aleppo, Homs, and Deir ez-Zour”, said His Excellency Mr Park Il, Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to Lebanon. 

"Through our collaboration with UNDP Syria, KOICA reaffirms its commitment to fostering resilience and sustainable recovery in conflict-affected communities. Our joint initiative, following the Humanitarian-Development-Peace Nexus, combines social cohesion with economic empowerment. Together with UNDP, we strive to empower vulnerable groups, improve access to essential services, and create dignified livelihood opportunities, ultimately fostering resilience and contributing to lasting positive change in Syria", said SEO Dongsung, KOICA Country Director based in Amman, Jordan.

The project, implemented over a three-year period, will enhance access to safe, dignified, green and sustainable livelihood opportunities, particularly for women-headed households. It will also prioritize improved access to critical essential services by rehabilitating health and education facilities, water, electricity, and sewage networks, as well as providing renewable energy solutions.

UNDP Resident Representative, Sudipto Mukerjee, thanked KOICA for their partnership with UNDP and highlighted the importance of having a holistic and area-based approach to recovery. “Our new partnership with KOICA is instrumental to enhancing resilience, promoting economic empowerment, equitable access to essential services, and bringing about hope to the targeted communities in Syria,” said the UNDP Resident Representative. “This project aligns with our shared commitment to supporting recovery efforts and improving the lives of vulnerable populations,” he added. 

By adopting an integrated area-based approach that aligns with resilience and recovery priorities, the project will also support local crisis-affected communities in identifying needs and resources, thus maximizing local ownership and empowerment, enhancing social cohesion, and ensuring the sustainability of the set interventions. In addition, participatory local recovery platforms will be established, and around 300 people (50 per cent women and youth) will have their capacities improved to facilitate the development of participatory and inclusive local recovery plans.

It is worth noting that the targeted governorates of Aleppo, Homs, and Deir ez-Zour have been deeply affected by the compounded effects of the crisis, economic downturn, and earthquakes, which have, in turn, exacerbated existing social cleavages and local conflict drivers. Women have been particularly affected, with sixteen per cent of women-headed households completely unable to meet their needs compared to eight per cent among all households. The area-based, participatory, multisectoral approach will allow for transformative recovery at the local level, while also ensuring community ownership at every stage of the programme cycle.

For further information, please contact:

Dania Darwish, Communications Specialist, Tel: 00963 (11) 6129811 | Mobile: 00963 989857937 – e-mail: dania.darwish@undp.org. For more information on UNDP – Syria see http://www.undp.org/Syria