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The crisis in Syria has been globally recognized as one of the worst humanitarian crises of our time. As of late 2020, more than 11.7 million people inside Syria are in need, while close to 5.7 million have taken refuge in neighbouring countries throughout the region. They continue to suffer the effects of a decade of conflict, including disruption of community networks, safety nets, and rule of law. Even as some parts of Syria stabilise, the crisis has passed a tipping point in terms of generational change, and its effects will undoubtedly continue for many years to come. This is particularly true in the case of women and girls due to the deep- rooted complexity of the issues they continue to face on a daily basis.

Meanwhile, the COVID-19 pandemic has added yet another unpredictable dimension to the crisis. In addition to significantly impeding access to life-saving sexual and reproductive health services for people in need, the restrictions on movement that have accompanied the pandemic have multiplied the pre-existing risks of gender-based violence by further confining women and girls within harmful situations while compounding the economic challenges that contribute to such violence. These restrictions also continue to place the lives of GBV survivors at risk by disrupting essential responses, counselling, and support services, further underscoring the need for more adaptable, flexible, and innovative programming to bridge these emerging gaps.  

Since 2011, UNFPA has been responding to the needs of Syrian women and girls. In 2020 alone, and despite the numerous restrictions that accompanied COVID-19, UNFPA provided life-saving sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services to nearly 1.9 million people through 264 health facilities, mobile clinics and outreach teams. Meanwhile, around 800,000 women and girls received gender-based violence (GBV) services while 98,000 deliveries were safe. UNFPA also continued to support the empowerment of women, girls and youth through its 116 specialized women and girls’ safe spaces and 22 youth centres.  

To respond to these challenges over the course of 2021, UNFPA is appealing for a total of USD 131.6 million, which will go toward funding its response across all countries directly impacted by the crisis, including Syria, Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq, and Egypt. In 2021, UNFPA plans to continue ensuring access to SRH and GBV services to people in need throughout those countries, in addition to helping refugee and host communities in addressing the needs arising from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

This document provides an overview of the response strategies and individual funding requirements within each country covered in UNFPA’s regional Syria crisis response.