Since violence first erupted in 2011, the crisis in Syria has become one of the most complicated humanitarian operations for WFP. More than 6.2 million people are displaced inside the country, and 6,000 more are forced from their homes every day.
With food production at an all-time low and an economy on the verge of collapse, children have born the brunt of the war’s effects.
Eight Years of War
Conflict in Northern Syria erupts when Turkish airstrikes destroy hospitals, schools and other public infrastructure. The violence forces more than 176,000 people - 74,000 of which are children - to flee their homes. To save themselves, many escape on foot with only what they can carry. WFP delivers emergency five-day food rations to 83,000 people in the north and is scaling up to reach a total of 580,000 there each month.Photo: WFP/Marwa Awad
Recent fighting in northwest Syria has forced nearly 200,000 people to flee their homes towards northern Idlib, aggravating the already dire humanitarian situation in camps where more than 300,000 displaced people are now living. WFP assists more than 3 million people every month.Photo: WFP/Marwa Awad
The Syrian civil war enters its eighth year.Photo: WFP/Marwa Awad
The fall of Raqqa and the departure of ISIS.Photo: WFP/Hussam Al Saleh
The United States launches a military strike on a Syrian government airbase in response to a second chemical weapon attack on civilians.
The fall of Aleppo after hundreds of government airstrikes leaves the city of roughly 4.6 million people in ruins.
WFP begins high-altitude airdrops in Deir Ezzor, a besieged area in northeastern Syria. More than 300 airdrops saved 100,000 lives.Photo: WFP/Photolibrary
The Syrian civil war begins, pitting the Assad government against the rebels.Photo: OCHA/Josephine Guerrero
More than 50 percent of the country’s population has been displaced and 3 million people rely on WFP every month for their basic needs.
- 6.5m people don't know where their next meal is coming from
- 1.7m children are out of school
- 75% of the population lives in extreme poverty
Meeting the challenge
WFP overcomes daunting obstacles to feed Syrian families and refugees across the region. Smart, innovative solutions include iris scans, truck convoys, bakeries and greenhouses.
Cash, vouchers and e-cards can be lost, stolen, or forged, putting recipients at risk. This technology allows Syrian refugees to safely purchase food from camp supermarkets using a scan of their eye instead.
WFP’s trucks reach hungry families in need, carrying more than 1 million pounds of lifesaving food. The trucks carry large bags of food, nutritional supplements and other supplies to hard-to-reach communities.
Bread is a staple food and a powerful cultural symbol in Syria. When bakeries inside eastern Aleppo were destroyed in conflict, WFP provided bundles of bread to nearly 12,000 displaced people.
Greenhouses are being rebuilt and farmers have been provided with tomato seeds and irrigation kits, as well as with food rations to get through the lean season before their tomato harvests are complete.
Because of these efforts, the World Food Programme feeds more than 3 million people inside Syria and 1.5 million Syrian refugees each month.
Shadia was eight years old when a bomb hit her house, leaving her with extensive scarring. Her family now lives in a refugee camp in Idlib.Read Shadia's story +
Roua loves art and won her school's art design competition last year. She is able to learn in her classroom thanks to a school meal.Read Roua's story +
“I feel I am living in a grave, forgotten,” says Mustafa. He runs a makeshift bakery in a basement because it's safer than anything above ground.Read Mustafa's story +
Help us realize a future beyond emergency assistance where our help is no longer needed.
Let’s build people’s knowledge, skills and resilience. Let’s invest in economic opportunities and sustainable food systems so that all Syrian families can get the nutrition they need to reach their full potential.