The Catholic Agency for Justice, Peace and Development

Solidarity with Syria Appeal

The Syrian army has declared that Aleppo has fully returned to government control, but more than 100,000 people have been displaced and are in urgent need of suitable shelter, warm clothing, heaters and fuel due to the wintry conditions. You can make a difference in the lives of the most vulnerable by supporting us as we work with our partners inside Syria.

“In expressing my deep sorrow and lively concern for what is happening in that already battered city – where children, the elderly, the sick, young and old, all are dying, I renew my appeal to everyone to commit themselves with all their strength to the protection of civilians as an imperative and urgent obligation."

Pope Francis

Aleppo update

The Syrian army declared that Aleppo has fully returned to government control after the last batch of civilians and militants were evacuated from the northwestern city.

Over 111,000 people have been displaced from formerly besieged neighborhoods of eastern Aleppo since 24 November, but people have started returning to their homes, where conditions allow. 


Since December there have been reports of children dying due to the severe cold weather and inadequate shelter conditions. Caritas is working to meet the most urgent needs of shelter, warm clothing for adults and children, heaters and fuel due to the wintery conditions.

"Most of the houses are damaged and some completely destroyed and lack basic services,"

Caritas staff report from the devastated city.


Between the 10 and 14 of December it is estimated that up to 37,000 people have been displaced from their homes in eastern Aleppo. 250,000 people living in the east part of the city are in dire need and many have been killed as fighting has intensified in early December. The near-continuous siege since mid-July has been compared to infamous massacres in Srebrenica and Rwanda.

“The indiscriminate brutality witnessed in Aleppo must end. The people of Aleppo need an immediate ceasefire.”

Caritas Internationalis Secretary General Michel Roy.

The UN describes the health situation inside east Aleppo as catastrophic. The cold season, overcrowding in shelters, poor hygiene, non-treated “neglected” conflict-related injuries and trauma are all factors.

We are working with Secours Catholique (Caritas France) and Caritas Syria providing vital healthcare to people in need. There is a particular focus on the elderly, an especially vulnerable group.

“Humanitarian agencies need safe, full, regular and unimpeded access. Health infrastructure is devastated. Hundreds of patients in critical conditions need to be evacuated,” said Michel Roy.

Syria overview

Right now 13.5 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance inside Syria, including 6.5 million internally displaced people (refugees within their own country). 

In 5 years, more than 400,000 people have been killed in Syria, and 13.5 million people have been affected or displaced, according to the UN.

Civilians continue to be the main victims of the Syrian conflict, and due to the destruction of the Syrian economy and infrastructure, poverty has become entrenched. There is also a lack of basic utility services, which has increased outbreaks of disease. Essential health services have been further disrupted by the exodus of medical staff.

“As president of the Catholic aid charity Caritas [in Syria], I am co-ordinating emergency relief for tens of thousands of people of all faiths, who desperately lack food, medical care and shelter, working in areas held both by the government and by armed opposition groups.

"We have many centres where people come to receive aid, and our volunteers go out to find those too weak, sick, old or young to help themselves. We support people of all backgrounds.”

Bishop Antoine Audo, President of Caritas Syria

You can make a real difference to the most vulnerable within Syria      


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Tutu ana te puehu - Stirring up the dust