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Shattered Lives: Protecting civilians in war-torn Syria

Last updated:
8 March 2017
Concern Worldwide

The case studies and focus group discussions in this report provide an insight into the all-pervasive violence that now, six years into the conflict, permeates every aspect of Syrian life and society, shattering lives, families and communities.

The Displaced Youth from Six Years of War, Six Shattered Lives-an illustration series to mark six years of war in Syria. Artist:Marc Corrigan,2017.
The Displaced Youth from Six Years of War, Six Shattered Lives-an illustration series to mark six years of war in Syria. Artist:Marc Corrigan,2017.

Concern is making a series of commitments, operational recommendations, and outlining a number of calls to action directed at the international community of UN member states and international donors. These calls must be urgently addressed if the catastrophic humanitarian situation within Syria is to be reversed in 2017.

Our Commitments

  • On the ground humanitarian response-Concern will be deepening its response to the protection issues that have been identified, working to prioritise the issues identified by our beneficiaries.
  • International advocacy-Concern, will use all of its centres of influence, including its leadership of Alliance2015, to push for a comprehensive diplomatic resolution to the conflict.

Operational Recommendations

  • Participation of children in conflict-Considering that a large number of Syrians have been forced or convinced to join armed groups, greater efforts must be made to raise awarness of the risks of such actions.
  • Community coping strategies and available services-Greater attention needs to be given to providing a more comprehensive service of psychological support and increasing safe spaces.
  • Child labour-Interventions should emphasise improving the livelihood security of households, especially for accompanied and separated children.
  • Separated and unaccompanied children-A need for greater engagement with community networks to ensure additional specialised support required for children is in place.

Calls to Action

  1. UN member states to urgently forge a comprehensive diplomatic strategy for a lasting peace in Syria.
  2. Parties to the conflict to implement an immediate cease fire and guarantee access to humanitarian aid.
  3. The United Nations Security Council to uphold the obligations outlined in UN Resolution 1674 in relation to the Protection of Civilians.
  4. UN member states and donors to increase funding for humanitarian protection programming.

This publication covers aid activities implemented with the financial assistance of several donors, including Irish Aid, USAID, DFID, ECHO and generous donations from the public. The ideas, opinions and comments herein are entirely the responsibility of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent or reflect the policies of any donors.

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