18 August 2015 | Issue No. 39
On Tuesday, UNRWA conducted its first humanitarian mission to Yalda, since access to the area was suspended on June 8th 2015. Amidst reports of a typhoid outbreak in the Yarmouk region, with at least tens of cases credibly reported in Yarmouk, Yalda, Babila and Beit Sahem, UNRWA was authorized to provide limited health assistance, as well as WASH supplies to the community.
UNRWA medical personnel established a mobile health point, providing 211 consultations over the course of the day, including six cases of typhoid.
UNRWA also provided 50,000 water purification tablets to the local committee to help ensure that residents have access to clean drinking water.
Those receiving assistance were comprised of Palestinian and Syrian families displaced or affected by conflict, plus host communities.
UNRWA’s priority remains the delivery of humanitarian aid to civilians within Yarmouk itself and reiterates its strong demand for respect and compliance with obligations to protect civilians and to establish secure conditions under which UNRWA can deliver life-saving humanitarian assistance.
The vulnerability of civilians in Yarmouk remains of the highest severity. UNRWA is deeply concerned that without access, the most basic humanitarian needs of Palestinian and Syrian civilians, including many children, continue to be left unmet.
As violence continues to profoundly threaten the lives and safety of Palestine refugees throughout Syria, UNRWA appeals for donors to increase their support to the Agency’s Syria Crisis Appeal has received only 30.8% of the funds needed for 2015.
The capacity of the Agency to sustain life-saving emergency interventions, whilst responding immediately to urgent developments such as the one impacting Yarmouk since April 1st, is undermined by chronic underfunding for humanitarian interventions inside Syria.
More than 95% of Palestine refugees now rely on UNRWA to meet their daily needs of food, water and healthcare.
Priority interventions include cash assistance which enables UNRWA to serve up to 470,000 Palestine refugees in need. Additional funding is also required for critical non-food items including blankets, mattresses and hygiene kits for displaced Palestine refugee families throughout Syria.