Commissioner-General to Visit Syria

17 May 2010


UNRWA Commissioner-General Filippo Grandi will arrive in Damascus on 17 May to begin a four-day visit to Syria.

During his mission, Grandi will meet with Syrian government officials to provide an update on UNRWA’s financial crisis. Grandi is also scheduled to attend the annual UNRWA/UNHCR regional meeting. He will also open a new community centre built in Yarmouk with funds from the US government.

A highlight of Mr Grandi’s visit will be the fundraising concert by Marwan Abado, Palestinian singer and lute player at the Opera House on 18 May. The concert is being held under the patronage of HE Mrs Asma al-Assad, First Lady of the Syrian Arab Republic, in support of the UNRWA education programme and in commemoration of UNRWA at 60.

UNRWA provides education, health, relief and social services, and micro-credit services to over 470,000 refugees in Syria.

For information only. Not an official record

Background Information

UNRWA is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions, and financial support has not kept pace with an increased demand for services caused by growing numbers of registered refugees, deepening poverty and conflict. As a result, the UNRWA General Fund, which supports core essential services and most staffing costs, operates with a large deficit. UNRWA emergency programmes and key projects, also operating with large deficits, are funded through separate funding portals. 

UNRWA is a United Nations agency established by the General Assembly in 1949 and mandated to provide assistance and protection to some 5 million registered Palestine refugees. Its mission is to help Palestine refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, West Bank and the Gaza Strip achieve their full human development potential, pending a just solution to their plight. UNRWA services encompass education, health care, relief and social services, camp infrastructure and improvement, and microfinance.

For more information, please contact:

Hala Mukhles
Public Information Officer - Syria Field Office
+ 963 (0) 940 88103
+ 963 (0) 940 88103

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