Norwegian Refugee Council holds regional meeting in Damascus

Damascus, SANA – The Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) held its regional meeting on Tuesday at Dama Rose Hotel in Damascus.

During a reception held after the meeting, the NRC’s Country Director for Syria Anna Cervi said that in cooperation with the Syria Trust for Development and ministries, the NRC has managed to reach more than 360,000 beneficiaries since it started work in Damascus in 2016.

She stressed the need to build upon the efforts exerted by the Syrian government and other humanitarian organizations, asserting that the NRC is committed to helping the most affected Syrians receive effective aid at the right time so that they can rebuild their future.

Cervi said the NRC seeks to develop and expand its programs to better meet the needs of affected people, with emphasis on high-priority fields such as education, social services, infrastructure, and preparing for the safe and voluntary return of refugees from abroad.

She said the NRC response program for Syria in 2019 involves the rehabilitation and restoration of 30 schools, supporting the training of 600 teachers at 3 schools, and helping 6,000 children and 3,500 adolescents to return to school, seeking funding for projects, and preparing a system for repairing the homes of 250 families at least.

For his part, NRC Regional Director for the Middle East Carsten Hansen lauded the support provided by the Foreign and Expatriates Ministry and the Syria Trust for Development, particularly for holding this meeting in Damascus.

Hansen pointed out to the support provided by the NRC for Syrians in neighboring countries since the beginning of the crisis, stressing the need to continue discussions regarding the return of refugees to their home country.

In turn, Secretary General of the Syria Trust for Development Fares Kallas underlined the importance of this meeting in carrying out better joint work, pointing out to the negative impact of sanctions which undermine efforts to provide aid to affected people, and which also hinder the work of humanitarian organizations on the ground.

Hazem Sabbagh

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