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UAE remains dedicated to covering health needs of Syrian population affected by crisis

posted on 01/04/2015: 1097 views

The UAE is dedicated to fulfilling the financial gap in the health sector of the Syrian refugee population in order to meet their basic humanitarian and health needs, which are increasing severely on a daily basis.

The Ministry of International Cooperation and Development, said in a report it issued yesterday, that the UAE demonstrated its commitment through strategic partnerships with international aid organisations, working within a clearly identified scope, and taking measures to prevent risks that may impede project implementation, in addition to monitoring and evaluation processes.

In January 2015, the ministry signed a one-year agreement with the World Health Organisation, WHO, as part of its support for the United Nations' Syria Humanitarian Assistance Response Plan, SHARP. The agreement is part of the nation's ongoing efforts to improve the health conditions of people affected by the Syrian crisis by creating a positive impact on their lives with a contribution of Dh 3.6 million, which will be distributed in various phases. This contribution will provide 700 patients inside Syria with artificial limbs, in addition to repairing artificial limbs for another 300 patients.

Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi, Minister of International Cooperation and Development, said, "The UAE has a long history of providing humanitarian assistance to those affected by crises and natural disasters around the world, and we recognise the importance of making sure basic needs are met – whether through healthcare, education, and employment opportunities – in particular to refugees and those that have been displaced. Our health aid to the Syrian refugee population is part of a directive of the UAE's wise leadership, and a reflection that the UAE will remain committed to supporting innocent civilians affected by the crisis."

The UAE also signed two agreements with the International Rescue Committee, contributing a total of Dh14.6 million towards the provision of healthcare services for Syrian refugees in Jordan. They provide education for children and employment opportunities for Syrian refugee youths in the Kurdistan region of Iraq as well.

Through one agreement, the UAE is contributing Dh7.3 million towards healthcare services for Syrian refugees in both Mafraq and Irbid governorates of Jordan, by making necessary healthcare available the UAE's aid is helping to reduce fatalities and illnesses in the refugee population. The number of beneficiaries is estimated to be around 80,000, of whom 36,000 are women and 24,000 are children. The project is scheduled for completion by the end of September, 2015.

The second agreement with IRC sees Dh7.3 million allocated to provide education and employment opportunities for Syrian refugee children and adolescents in the Kurdish region of Iraq. The project aims to increase access to primary and secondary schools through additional shifts and improved facilities. The project intends to improve quality of education through the professional development of teachers focused on instructional practices and student well-being. Increased income and savings for marginalised youth as well as improved goal-setting behaviour and self-esteem are also some of the project outcomes and goals, where the number of beneficiaries is 6,000 Syrian refugee students in Dohuk and Erbil governorates.

According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, UNHCR, the health services provided by the UAE covered the cost of over 30% of the total health needs of both Azraq and Zaatari camps between January and September 2014. This impact was the result of an Dh18 million contribution to UNHCR, made last year, for the provision of health assistance in the two camps, of which Dh7 million was allocated to health activities and Dh11 million for water, sanitation and health. The UAE's aid allowed UNHCR to reach almost 94,000 Syrian refugees through two field hospitals operating with a total of 55 beds, nine primary healthcare centres, and one delivery unit in Zaatari camp. In Azraq refugee camp, the UAE's donation is supporting a clinic that is open 24 hours per day, seven days a week, in addition to one health post.

Jawaher, a nine-month-old baby that was found by the health team of the IRC mobile clinic, which functions through the UAE's support, is but one example of a child that has benefited from the various aid programs in place. Jawaher was found in one of the communities in a remote area of the Northern Jordanian desert weighing only 4.5 kilograms (10 pounds) – almost the same as her weight when she was born, nine months earlier. Through the UAE's agreements with international aid organisations, Jawaher has been able to receive specialised care in one of Jordan's hospitals, and will be treated by specialist nutritionists in one of the UNHCR-funded Jordan Health Aid Society clinics. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


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