Winter Weather Exposes Syrian Refugees
in Jordan to More Hardship

photo: Rada Tierney/IOCC

Baltimore, MD (January 31, 2014) — Warm winter clothing is a welcome sight to Manal, 5, whose family lost everything when rocket fire struck their home in Homs, Syria, and burned it to the ground. The family escaped and fled to Jordan, but Manal suffered second- and third-degree burns over her entire left side. The little girl who once used to laugh and play with friends in her old neighborhood now rarely smiles as she copes with the painful scars hidden by clothing and curious stares at the exposed scars on her arm. “She isolates herself from the family, ashamed of how she looks,” her mother, Malak, said tearfully. “With no money and no work for my husband, it has been hard to keep my daughter dressed in clothes that keep her warm and help ease her pain.”

Thousands of Syrian refugee families now living in Jordan share the fate of Manal’s family – escaping the violence of civil war to save their lives – and left with nothing, a home reduced to rubble, a lifetime of hard work erased in a flash. Winter weather only heightens their misery as they struggle at night against the cold desert winds with little protection. International Orthodox Christian Charities (IOCC) is responding to thousands of Syrian refugee families with urgently needed humanitarian relief to get them through the winter. Working with community based partners, IOCC, an ACT Alliance member, is distributing warm clothing, winter blankets, food, hygiene kits, mattresses, insulating rugs, and school kits to Syrian refugee families living in the capital city of Amman and the Jordanian governorates of Irbid, Mafraq, Ajloun, Jerash, and Madaba.

IOCC is also providing winter relief items as well as household items such as cookware and food parcels to vulnerable Jordanian families to help ease the burden of those hosting Syrian refugees or indirectly affected by this humanitarian crisis. Since 2012, IOCC has assisted 890,000 Syrian refugees living in Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq and Armenia, as well as to Syrian families displaced in their own country by civil strife.