Extremadura Regional Government Supports UNRWA Health Programme in Syria

13 September 2013

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) is pleased to welcome a new partner from Spain, the Extremadura Regional Government, and is grateful for its generous donation of EUR 100,000 (US$ 133,000). 

The contribution will help UNRWA purchase important medical equipment and distribute it among the Agency’s primary health centres in Syria, supporting high-quality diagnostic and treatment services for the Palestine refugee population.

The valuable support from Extremadura comes at an important moment, as the conflict in Syria has badly affected access to health care for Palestine refugees. Ongoing violence has closed many UNRWA health centres and reduced the number of daily medical consultations by over 60 per cent, which has devastating consequences for an already vulnerable population with high rates of diseases such as diabetes and hypertension. 

Support from partners such as the Extremadura Regional Government has been instrumental in allowing UNRWA to continue providing services, including health services, to Palestine refugees in Syria. 

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Background Information

UNRWA is confronted with an increased demand for services resulting from a growth in the number of registered Palestine refugees, the extent of their vulnerability and their deepening poverty. UNRWA is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions and financial support has been outpaced by the growth in needs. As a result, the UNRWA Programme Budget, which supports the delivery of core essential services, operates with a large shortfall. UNRWA encourages all Member States to work collectively to exert all possible efforts to fully fund the Agency’s Programme Budget. UNRWA emergency programmes and key projects, also operating with large shortfalls, 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 and lasting solution to their plight. UNRWA services encompass education, health care, relief and social services, camp infrastructure and improvement, protection and microfinance.

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