The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) is extremely grateful to Kuwait for its “very generous support” to food assistance operations throughout Syria. “We thank the Amir of the State of Kuwait, His Highness Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmed Al Jaber Al Sabah, for his leadership in mobilizing the donor community to provide much needed support,” read a statement by WFP. “Together, we remain committed to the millions of victims of a conflict that has gone on far too long.
As the crisis continues to go forward, the needs continue to grow, and the resources of the humanitarian response are stretched further and further,” it added in a call of appeal made a day ahead of aid-pledging talks for Syria hosted by Kuwait. “The assistance we are providing today, we will have to provide again tomorrow. We now have to prioritize our assistance so that the most vulnerable families are protected,” said the WFP. As the conflict enters a fifth year “needs are also changing,” added the statement. “We are now faced with Syrian children who have spent the first critical 1,000 days of their lives in a conflict situation without adequate food and nutrients. We must ensure our food assistance addresses the development needs of the most vulnerable victims of this crisis.
The WFP added that its programmes are evolving according to the changing needs of the many displaced Syrian families. It referred to the “school feeding” programme, which in cooperation with UNICEF, is providing meals to children in order to encourage them to go to school. On a final note, WFP said, “food assistance can stabilize families as they face an uncertain future. We ask the global community gathered in Kuwait to stand by the Syrian people and renew its commitment to a future generation of Syrians.”
Meanwhile, UNICEF has expressed gratitude for Kuwait’s “generous support” in meeting the most urgent needs of Syrian children and for hosting international donors to the cause. “As the Syria crisis enters its fifth year, UNICEF has been on the ground to meet the most urgent needs of children, with invaluable support from donors,” read a statement by the UN agency.
It went on to praise the Gulf country as “one of UNICEF’s largest donors to the Syria crisis”, adding that its contributions to this specific UN body have reached nearly US$ 90 million. Commenting ahead a third set of global donor talks for Syria, Maria Calivis, UNICEF Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa, said that this support, under the leadership of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, “came at such a crucial time. “Without this generous funding we would not have been able to reach as many Syrian children,” said Calivis. “Through Kuwait’s support, UNICEF was able to reach 8.6 million Syrians with direct emergency support. Inside Syria, UNICEF procured vaccines against polio for 2.9 million children.