Save the Children Canada

Save the Children Canada

March 09, 2012 08:38 ET

Freezing Temperatures and Violent Conflict Leave Displaced Syrian Families in Urgent Need of Food and Shelter, Warns Save the Children

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 9, 2012) - Families fleeing conflict in Syria have been shot at, become separated from each other and have had to deal with freezing temperatures as they try to cross the border into neighbouring Lebanon, reported Save the Children today. Travel is made more difficult by thick snow in the mountains.

Save the Children is working on the Syrian border in Lebanon, distributing food and soap, towels and buckets; running safe places for children to play; and helping children who have been through extremely distressing experiences. The agency is preparing to do the same in Jordan.

Thousands of people are reported to have left their homes in Syria in recent days and aid agencies have been preparing to receive them in Lebanon. However, so far relatively few have arrived in the country, prompting concerns for their safety.

Sanna Johnson, Save the Children's Middle East director said: "We haven't yet seen the numbers of refugees crossing from Syria that we were expecting, despite reports that thousands have left their homes. We know that displaced children will be terrified, cold, hungry and exhausted: it is essential that these children receive help as soon as possible. If they cannot reach us in Lebanon, we hope to be allowed into Syria to reach them."

Save the Children has launched a global social media and digital campaign calling on world leaders to stop the killing and to ensure that aid agencies are given access to the children and families in desperate need.

"Over ninety years ago, our founder said that children shouldn't suffer because of the actions or inactions of adults," said Patricia Erb, President and CEO, Save the Children. "All the parties must work towards a rapid and peaceful solution to the crisis and ensure that children are protected."

UN Humanitarian Affairs chief, Baroness Valerie Amos visited Damascus this week to discuss humanitarian access. Save the Children has launched an international campaign calling for free and unfettered humanitarian access to ensure families and children in Syria receive the help they need.

Save the Children has a media officer in Lebanon who is on the Syrian border with a photographer.

Contact Information

  • For more information and to arrange interviews
    please contact Save the Children's media contact in Canada:
    Cicely McWilliam
    416-218-1888 or Cell 647-291-1683
    cmcwilliam@savethechildren.ca