By Bella DiFilippo*
The Syrian Civil War continues to claim lives and force families to flee their homes. As refugees, many have traveled to bordering countries seeking shelter, hoping to return home one day. As of June 30, 2017, neighboring country, Lebanon, is hosting over one million Syrian refugees.
Half of Syrian refugees are between the ages of 10 and 24, and most are forced to drop out of school due to the crisis. To reach these children, the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) partners with American Near East Refugee Aid (ANERA). ANERA is a nonprofit organization based in the United States, focused on providing aid and health, development, and education programs in the Middle East.
VIDEO BY ANERA
To meet the basic needs of Syrian refugees in Lebanon, UMCOR sent two shipments of hygiene kits and school kits. A total of 45,000 hygiene kits and 21,000 school kits were distributed to five host communities in Lebanon during health campaigns and educational courses provided by ANERA.
Relief supply kits are part of a collaborative effort of United Methodist Relief Supply Warehouses located across the United States. Most kits are assembled in local churches, homes, and annual conferences. Once prepared, the kits are sent to UMCOR’s Sager Brown Depot in Baldwin, Louisiana, for review and are packaged for final shipment.
Together, UMCOR’s relief supplies and ANERA’s life skills classes restore basic human dignity to Syria’s youth. This project has supported 45,000 refugees and their host families. To support UMCOR’s work in relief supply distribution, please give to Advance #901440.
*Bella DiFilippo is program area liaison from Mission Engagement for Global Ministries.