Since 2011, Syria has gradually descended into civil war and displaced a considerable part of its population internally and to neighboring countries. With the vast majority of Syrian refugees staying in the region, neighbouring countries carry a large part of the burden. In line with the Regional Refugee & Resilience Plan (3RP), Caritas Switzerland focuses on the nexus of humanitarian and longerterm development support in a protracted crisis.
Caritas Switzerland’s emergency relief engagement started in April 2012. Since then, Caritas Switzerland has gradually expanded its activities towards a variety of projects within Syria and its neighbouring countries. In the strategy phase 2021-2025, Caritas Switzerland focuses on distribution of cash assistance and the provision of access to basic services. In particular, Caritas Switzerland addresses the multiple educational needs of out-of-school children, through inclusion and retention initiatives, teacher training, and strengthening of education systems.
Caritas Switzerland's strategy in response to the Syria Crisis further aims at building sustainable livelihoods. In view of gaining independence from direct aid delivery, refugees and vulnerable members of the host community receive skills training or the opportunity to participate in income generating activities.
Caritas Switzerland chose the two outcome areas Income and Migration of its global strategy. Within these outcome areas, the Syria Crisis Response programme combines interventions in the area of emergency relief, including education and child protection, as well as livelihood interventions to ensure that internally displaced persons, refugees and host communities can access the means to survive, build resilience and continue a self-determined life.