EDF grants are directed to aid refugees from Syria, Burundi




A Christian aid worker holds a Syrian refugee’s newborn baby during a visit inside the family's makeshift shelter in Lebanon's Bekaa Valley, where a large number of displaced Syrians have fled.
Photo by Paul Jeffrey/ACT Alliance

A Christian aid worker holds a Syrian refugee’s newborn baby during a visit inside the family's makeshift shelter in Lebanon's Bekaa Valley, where a large number of displaced Syrians have fled.

Brethren Disaster Ministries has directed grants from the Church of the Brethren’s Emergency Disaster Fund (EDF) to aid Syrian and other refugees sheltering in Lebanon, and refugees from Burundi who have fled to Tanzania.

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Syrian refugee crisis in Lebanon

An allocation of $43,000 supports the work of the Lebanese Society for Education and Social Development with Syrian refugees and other refugees in Lebanon. After seven years, the Syrian civil war has displaced nearly 10 million Syrians, even as other conflicts in the Middle East have displaced millions more people. Lebanon now has 1.5 million Syrian refugees and another half million Palestinian refugees. With this crisis continuing and children out of school for years, the Lebanese Society for Education and Social Development has expanded its focus on refugee children and has developed an intervention for Syrian and Iraqi refugee children in the public school system working closely with the Ministry of Education. The project will provide refugee children with the opportunity to enhance interpersonal skills, problem solving skills, and emotional awareness to promote healthier coping skills and better psychosocial well-being. The society plans to provide these services in 10 public schools during the 2017 calendar year, with a budget of $42,728 per school or a total budget of $427,280.

Burundi refugee crisis in Tanzania

An allocation of $30,000 supports the work of Church World Service (CWS) to assist refugees from Burundi who are sheltering in Tanzania. Since April 2015, Burundians have been fleeing their country following election violence and a failed coup. More than 250,000 Burundians have fled their country, and more than 140,000 are living in 3 camps in Tanzania. Due to a continually worsening situation in Burundi the three established camps in Tanzania--Nyarugusu, Mtendeli, and Nduta--need additional support to be scaled up and to provide appropriate humanitarian assistance. Funds will support the CWS focus on livelihood opportunities and self-reliance among refugees living in Nyarugusu Refugee Camp. This work complements the ongoing ACT Alliance response that focuses on water, sanitation, hygiene, cash grants, distribution of non-food items, community-based psychosocial counseling, primary education, livelihoods, and self-reliance. A previous EDF grant of $60,000 was made for this appeal in June 2015.

For more about the Emergency Disaster Fund and to contribute to disaster relief efforts, go to www.brethren.org/edf .

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