An estimated 9 million Syrians have fled their homes since the outbreak of the civil war in March 2011, taking refuge in neighbouring countries or within Syria itself. According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), over 4 million have fled to Syria’s immediate neighbours Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq, and Turkey. 6.5 million are internally displaced within Syria. Meanwhile, under 150,000 Syrians have declared asylum in the European Union, while member states have pledged to resettle a further 33,000 Syrians. The vast majority of these resettlement spots – 28,500 or 85% – are pledged by Germany.
Following the recent events in the Mediterranean Sea, resettlement countries have offered additional resettlement places for Syrian refugees in the MENA region. The 2015 resettlement submission target for Syrians has increased by 11,590 or over 42 per cent (from 27,500 to 35,750). As part of international burden and responsibility sharing, these offers serve to protect vulnerable refugees from further harm and help them to re-establish their lives. Since 2013, States have pledged a total of 130,408 places.
These refugees and IDP need not be a ‘burden’ or be the shared responsibility of any State. We must all do something to help the hundreds of thousands of refugees who risk their lives and go on the harrowing journeys with the hope of a safer life in Europe. At Re-Build we believe the best way to help these people is to help rebuild their lives in their home countries. Thus preventing the deadly journeys they take into Europe. The washing ashore of the body of toddler Alan Kurdi was the tipping point of the international conscience, which prompted immediate action by a global solidarity with the refugee crisis of the century.
Despite the conflict which surrounds the region, as Re-Build, we believe that had Alan Kurdi and hundreds of thousands like him had adequate living conditions, there would not have been this type of forced exile which has deadly consequences. Therefore, we saw the need to deliver the basic humanitarian aid and needs in order to stop the deaths of tens of thousands of refugees on the way to Europe. We believe that the solution to the worldwide refugee crisis is not in them reaching Europe, but in us providing the basic needs and a warm, safe place for people.
In our efforts to help rebuild better lives for people in their home countries, our first international project is to build an Eco-School in the municipality of Kobanê and equip it with all the necessary resources. In addition to our Eco-School project (info to be added- number of students, some detail of what type of school etc), we will provide support for the reconstruction of Kobanê in every way possible. We will support the clearance efforts and the rebuilding of infrastructure, in order for Kobanê’s residents to access clean water, have an electri-town and roads.
In all of our work within the municipality, we will work in partnership with the local Administration and other NGOs, as well as utilising the skills and experiences of the local inhabitants. We have made it our mission to work within our Sustainability framework wherever possible.