For immediate release: Mercy-USA Response to Aleppo Crisis and Aftermath

UPDATE: JANUARY 17, 2017—All four Mercy-USA field team leaders with their families have been evacuated from E. Aleppo. Mercy-USA is grateful to know of their relative safety. 

Mercy-USA for Aid and Development has been providing humanitarian food and medical relief to Syrian families inside the country since 2012.

Plymouth, Michigan, December 15, 2016—While the world watches the fall of Aleppo with disbelief and horror, Mercy-USA for Aid and Development has teams outside Aleppo with existing humanitarian aid projects and will increase aid to the worsening crisis.

Mercy-USA Field Team Among the Tens of Thousands Caught in Aleppo Working in Aleppo since 2013, Mercy-USA food basket distribution was originally implemented to provide reliable, monthly supplemental food aid to ensure a family’s good health and nutrition but by December 4th of 2016, our remaining stockpiled food baskets were being rationed as the last source of food in the city. Our four field team members who refused to evacuate earlier this summer out of concern for the needy in Aleppo, attempted to distribute the rations from our warehouse when the neighborhood fell under attack causing them to flee to an undisclosed area. The remaining food stores fell under Regime control and we hope that the food ended up in the mouths of the needy and starving in Aleppo.

With the fall of Aleppo, tens of thousands of civilians including humanitarian aid workers were forced into a neighborhood of less than 2 square miles. An evacuation agreement was reached December 15th and the first fifty busloads of civilians has arrived in northern Syria outside of Syrian government control. Our field team, two men and two women with their families including children were able to eventually evacuate out of Aleppo.

Mercy-USA Offers Emergency Humanitarian Relief Outside of Aleppo Mercy-USA is continuing its operations in areas outside of Aleppo in Idlib Governorate where tens of thousands of internally displaced persons, IDPs, are surviving in makeshift camps and other improvised housing. We expect that more people will arrive to this region if an evacuation of Aleppo is achieved and we will be ready to offer emergency aid to them. Currently, Mercy-USA is delivering food baskets to thousands of displaced people in this very barren landscape as well as a winterization project that includes vented stoves and a new eco-friendly fuel to last the winter. See details here. Kitchen starter kits are being distributed to newly arrived Evacuees from Aleppo.

Mercy-USA to Open a Primary Health Care Clinic The healthcare system in northern Syria has collapsed. The existing health clinics lack adequate capacity and the destruction of so many hospitals has had a spillover effect on the remaining facilities, creating a huge increase in demand. Mercy-USA is opening a new primary health clinic including pediatric and obstetric healthcare. This project will provide life-saving and life-sustaining humanitarian health assistance to an affected population of at least 30,000 people including pregnant, lactating women and children living in Northern Syria. Furthermore, this project is designed to support community resilience and increase institutional and response capacity of healthcare workers and support staff.

Umar al-Qadi, CEO of Mercy-USA says, “We want everyone to know that we have not given up on Syria and its people who have been caught up in this calamity. We are determined to stay inside the country and offer life-saving and sustainable help to those who need it most.”

Mercy-USA for Aid and Development is dedicated to alleviating human suffering and supporting individuals and their communities to become more self-sufficient. Since 1988, Mercy-USA’s projects focus on improving health, nutrition and access to safe water, as well as promoting economic and educational growth around the world. Mercy-USA has 4-Stars with Charity Navigator. www.mercyusa.org

Media Contact:

Kari Ansari

Director of Communications and Public Affairs

Mercy-USA for Aid and Development

703-628-0260

kansari@mercyusa.org

 

 

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