By Tülay Güler
Suruc, Turkey, January 2015 – A harsh winter in Turkey is threatening the wellbeing of Syrian refugee children, majority of them living in squalid conditions. In camps across the country, the Turkish Government, UNICEF and other UN agencies have been providing warm clothing to children to protect them from sub- zero winter temperatures.
As a part of the winterization response, UNICEF has procured winter wear for children under two years and clothing, such as jackets, trousers, and jumpers for children aged 3-18, in Suruç town, surrounding villages and municipality camps, as well as in the host community in the district. The total number of the children to be reached in this area alone is 38,666.
These winterization activities will continue in the remaining 21 camps where 50,000 children will receive warm clothing, including woollen socks for children aged between three and 11 years.
UNICEF continues to focus on the winter needs of children, especially infants who are the most vulnerable. The needs are more acute among recent arrivals in the Suruc region.
In 2014, UNICEF already provided 30,000 thermal undergarments for children age two to 15 years in preparation for the winter, the magnitude of which could not be exactly predicted.