AMMAN, 30 April 2018 – Winter cash assistance enabled families in Za’atari and Azraq refugee camps to buy warm clothes for their children before freezing temperatures set in and is an effective and powerful tool to help realize children’s rights to health, education and recreation, according to a new report by UNICEF.
During the 2017-18 winterization campaign, UNICEF supported 63,002 children in Za’atari and Azraq with winter cash assistance for clothing. Families received 20 JD (USD 28) per child as a one-off cash assistance in October and November.
The post-distribution survey shows that over 95 per cent of parents in the two camps were prepared for the harsh winter conditions this year because of the timely and effective distribution of cash assistance for children’s clothing. Most of the cash distributed – 97 per cent – was spent on children’s clothing, while a small amount was spent on heating and other household costs.
The cash assistance enabled families to buy three to four winter clothing items. 95 per cent of the cash distributed was injected into the local markets in both camps.
“Winter in a refugee camp is not an easy place for a child,” said Robert Jenkins, UNICEF Representative, Jordan. “UNICEF’s winter cash assistance gives parents the means to keep their children warm and protected in a dignified way.”
Since the first winter in Za’atari Refugee Camp five years ago, UNICEF has provided winterization support for children – beginning with distributions of warm clothing, shoes, baby kits and blankets and evolving into a cash distribution in 2015.
The protracted nature of the Syrian crisis has led UNICEF to design more sustainable and long-lasting solutions for children. In the refugee camps, this has included scaling up infrastructure and services for interventions such as water and sanitation and education.
In addition to this assistance, UNICEF also supported 55,000 vulnerable Syrian children outside the camps this winter with warm clothing and boots. The production of winter kits is now happening inside of Za’atari and Azraq camps, providing refugee youth with much-needed jobs.
UNICEF’s winterization campaign is funded by the governments of Canada and the US and individual donors through UNICEF National Committees.
UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, to build a better world for everyone.