Caritas helps Syrian victims of war inside and outside the country
Syria’s humanitarian crisis is the biggest emergency for Caritas right now. The vicious conflict has forced 6 million Syrians out of their homes – 2 million of them into other countries – and has left more than 100 000 people dead.
Pope Francis is closely engaged with the crisis and is calling constantly for an end to the fighting. He has highlighted the assistance Caritas has given to Syrians regardless of their ethnic or religious affiliation as the best way to contribute towards peace.
Caritas gives them clothes, blankets and food parcels. If they are too sick or too poor to reach one of Caritas’ medical centres, a doctor visits them. It helps them find shelter, warmth and schooling for their children. Counsellors offer support to cope with depression and bereavement.
Despite the enormous difficulties and dangers, Caritas Syria continues to work inside the country. It provides emergency assistance from its centres, which are sometimes on the frontline.
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Caritas Updates from Syria
Caritas centres have seen an increase in the numbers of Iraqi refugees arriving in Lebanon in need of support since ISIS (Daech) extremists swept across northern Iraq in 2014.
Four years of war have left Syria in ruins, millions of people have fled and the violence has spread across the region. Caritas is providing aid to 1.2 million people.
The Lebanese health system is largely private. For poor Syrian refugees in need of medical care, this is an enormous issue. Caritas is one of the only organisations in Lebanon supporting medical fees.
The situation for Syrian refugees in Lebanon is tough, and the needs are enormous, but as the humanitarian crisis enters its fifth year Caritas staff are meeting this overwhelming situation with dedication and perseverance, and in many cases being the crucial difference between survival and destitution.
Three courageous women received the "Women, Sowers of Development" prize on International Women's Day (March 8th). The prize, given by Caritas Internationalis and Voices of Faith, honors women whose hard work has transformed their communities, lifting them out of severe poverty.
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