Syria: the worst refugee crisis since World War II
With the war in Syria still raging on, 12.2 million Syrians are in urgent need for support, the UNHCR says. In July 2014, it had been 10.8 million. Violence expelled almost half of the Syrian people from their homes. According to the UN Coordinator for humanitarian help, Valerie Amos, some of the refugees had to leave their community several times. Meanwhile, there are 7.6 million displaced within Syria; more than 3.2 million left their home country. Since the beginning of the war in March 2011, more than 150 000 people died.
The situation of Syrian refugees in the Middle East is getting worse day by day. Swiss politicians of all parties agree that fast help is needed: Switzerland has to engage more actively in refugee relief work. For example, there is discussion if Switzerland could host an important number of refugees whose lives are currently threatened. Moreover, it is now crucial to increase humanitarian activities on site. NOIVA is deploying all means to ensure fast and efficient support on behalf of refugees in Jordan.
From 25 December 2014 to 2 January 2015 in Jordan, NOIVA conducted a humanitarian outreach with 140 Swiss volunteers, supported by a smaller number of volunteers from other countries. This project turned out to be a very touching and encouraging experience: Everyone realized that even a little help makes a big difference for an individual.
Further projects are to follow soon. NOIVA is always looking for medical and psychological personnel, craftsmen, social workers, teachers, artists, etc. – basically for people who are willing to invest their time and effort in a unique way. Specialist knowledge is not a prerequisite.