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As winter progresses, EU Humanitarian Aid provides valuable emergency support to Palestine refugees in Syria
22 December 2014
The continued displacement of Palestine refugees as a result of the armed conflict in Syria has deepened their vulnerability and weakened their resilience. For many, the loss of homes, livelihoods, family members and community support has caused profound trauma, while the onset of winter deepens humanitarian needs.
The UNRWA cash assistance programme is a lifeline for Palestine refugees facing a fourth winter of armed conflict in Syria. Cash assistance allows refugees to manage their own needs, prioritizing spending between food, rent and winter items, such as blankets and heating fuel. They are able to do so thanks to the support of donors such as the EU Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection Department (ECHO).
In 2014, ECHO donated €1.9 million (US$ 2.4 million) towards the UNRWA emergency cash assistance programme, providing a cash grant of €45 (US$ 64) to 39,000 Palestine refugees. Over 460,000 Palestine refugees in Syria require continuous humanitarian assistance, relying on the sustained generosity of donors such as ECHO to meet their minimum humanitarian needs.
In 2014, the UNRWA cash assistance programme was only 50 per cent funded, forcing a reduction in the number of cash distribution rounds from six to three. For 2015, the Agency will appeal to its donors to increase their contribution to the cash programme, which provides critical support to Palestine refugees, whose resilience and coping mechanisms have been eroded by four years of conflict.