The Catholic charity Aid to the Church in Need says it has sent nearly $50 million in aid to projects in Syria since the start of the Syrian civil war in 2011.
Aid to the Church in Need has partnered with several churches in Syria to provide food, rent, medical and psychological support to thousands of Christian families enduring the ongoing economic crisis in the country.
This summer, the group also held a summer program for children who have been injured in the war or who were born with disabilities.
According to The Christian Post, the organization has provided more than 1,000 families with affordable bread since September 2020.
“There are so many Syrians who went from supporting themselves to waiting in lines for help, and this has created a real sense of loss of dignity because many have become completely reliant on aid from our charity to survive,” said director of outreach for Aid to the Church in Need Edward Clancy. “We have to make sure that Christians in Syria are supported. We don’t want the churches in Syria to become just a bunch of museums or empty buildings that are only open to people who are visitors simply because the Syrian residents stop finding hope in their churches.”
According to the United Nations, the war started in Syria in 2011, and since then, more than 5 million Syrians have fled the country, and another 6 million have been displaced within the country.
Some 13 million people are in need of assistance, according to reports. Many residents live without electricity and need non-perishable items. The charity has also provided COVID-19 testing centers and personal protective equipment, and hand sanitizers to families.
Since 2011, Aid to the Church in Need has given about $35 million for humanitarian help, such as food and housing, nearly $7 million to support education, almost $5.5 million for reconstruction and more than $1 million in general pastoral assistance and community support.
“As Christians, we are called to live and express faith to others, and evangelization happens in the way you serve others,” Clancy said. “Jesus came to serve and not to be served. Jesus died serving, and I think it’s our duty to do as Jesus did by living to serve. There are so many people in Syria that are in desperate need right now, and they don’t want to flee their country because that is the home they know. … There is a dire need.”
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Luis Dafos
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.