Humanitarian and Livelihoods Program


 Photo: UNDP

Since March 2011, Syria has been witnessing an internal civil unrest that has directly resulted in losses of human lives, significant displacement and migration, weakened social services, destruction of basic social and productive infrastructure and significant loss of livelihoods, destruction of homes and property, and the deterioration of the rule of law and security.

The international sanctions, the sharp decrease in the exchange rate of the Syrian pound and capital flight to neighboring countries have also contributed to serious deterioration in the conditions of living and soaring unemployment. A notable increase in the demand for humanitarian assistance, the erosion of assets and resources, and increasing dependency on aid have further exacerbated poverty and vulnerability in communities.

The Humanitarian and Livelihoods program is designed to respond to the basic needs for humanitarian assistance and livelihoods creation and/or stabilization in affected areas, for both IDPs and hosting communities who have overstretched their resources. Additionally, the project is aimed at contributing to building the resilience of the Syrian people to cope with the consequences of the conflict.

To enhance synergies and complementarities and maximize the use of resources and access to affected people, the project foresees strengthening coordination among the various stakeholders involved in emergency livelihoods rehabilitation and early recovery, including with NGO’s and civil society.

Expected Results

The overall goal is to contribute to strengthening the resilience of the Syrian people to cope with the effects of the current unrest and enable those whose livelihoods were severely disrupted to recover and rebuild their lives. The project’s specific objectives are to ensure a well-coordinated response that provides IDPs and their host communities with rapid employment opportunities to enhance service delivery and rehabilitate basic community infrastructure; and creates/stabilizes basic livelihoods in view of supporting spontaneous recovery efforts.

Special attention will be given to creating such opportunities to female-headed households and people with a disability. To achieve this, the project has five outputs as follows:

  • Output 1: Emergency employment opportunities created for improved service delivery and repair of basic community infrastructure;

  •  Output 2: Emergency support for restoration/ stabilization of disrupted livelihoods provided;
  • Output 3: Emergency support provided for vulnerable groups with special attention to women headed household and people with disabilities;

  • Output 4: National and local capacities for community resilience enhanced;

  • Output 5: Coordination systems for emergency livelihoods enhanced;


As of 2013, UNDP supported internally displaced persons residing in host communities and informal shelters, who receive minimal assistance from other partners.  The assistance included distributing winterization and summarization items (including the provision of blankets, quilts, clothes, mattresses, hygiene kits, bed sheets, carpets, and towels), hygiene kits, insecticides and kitchen sets. UNDP reached 45,000 families in need in all Governorates. As part of asset replacement UNDP distributed 10,000 kitchen sets benefiting 50,000 IDPs at all Governorates.

Moreover, UNDP was able to revive seven industrial facilities in Damascus, Homs and Aleppo supporting job opportunities for 300 workers. In addition, sewing workshops established in Hassakeh and Salamieh are employing 200 women including seven women with disabilities. The items produced in workshops were also distributed in 2013 to IDPs who were in dire need for winterization items in these two governorates.

The funds allocated under the HLP supported by realigned projects allowed UNDP in 2013 to target 55,000 affected families whose livelihoods were severely disrupted through providing livelihoods support of different types. Approximately 2000 local laborers were provided with temporary job opportunities under a cash-for-work employment scheme in 2013, this included opportunities created for solid waste removal and disposal in Homs and Deir Ezzor. The created jobs enabled beneficiaries to earn an income that allowed them to meet their basic needs. Furthermore, the removal and disposal of solid waste improved the environmental and health conditions; thus benefiting 700,000 IDPs and affected communities residing in affected areas.

Furthermore, the spirit of volunteerism was promoted through involving local volunteers in hygiene promotion campaigns that accompanied the actual garbage collection activities, the number of volunteers reached 400 in Deir Ezzor. Labor-intensive rehabilitation of 30 Roman wells in Hama for water provision to the surrounding communities contributed to the creation of employment opportunities and availed water for the IDPs and affected population living in target areas.


Donor Name Amount Date of receiving
Kuwait 1 $1,000,000 1 March 2013
Kuwait 2 $2,000,000 20 May 2013
CERF 1 $1,000,000 20 August 2013
CERF 2 $500,974 9 November 2013
ERF  $745,576 25 September 201
Japan $500,000 5 April 2013
Hungary $10,000  
BCPR $1,200,000  
TRAC $1,000,000  


Donor Name
European Union $6,800,000

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