International Medical Corps will immediately scale up health care and training programs to support Syrian refugees seeking humanitarian services in neighboring Turkey, thanks to a $750,000 award from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation.
“The Hilton Foundation’s extremely generous support will allow us to increase much-needed relief for Syrian refugees who have fled the violence into Turkey, with lifesaving health services, essential supplies and training programs,” said Nancy A. Aossey, President & CEO of International Medical Corps. “As the conflict in Syria intensifies, a growing number of families will seek safety and shelter in Turkey, putting further strain on the country’s health care system. Thanks to the Hilton Foundation’s extraordinary compassion for, and commitment to, vulnerable communities worldwide, this timely award will help us rapidly expand to meet these increasing humanitarian needs.”
“Our foundation believes that the humanitarian needs of the Syrian refugees cannot be ignored,” said Edmund J. Cain, Vice President, Grant Programs at the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation. “Highly vulnerable women, children and elderly people are facing unspeakable suffering and cannot be abandoned—no matter how appalled we may all be by the conflict that has caused this crisis. The burden should also not be left to neighboring countries like Turkey to bear. We, therefore, hope others in philanthropy and the donor community will also lend their support.”
The UN Refugee Agency has registered nearly 435,000 Syrians in Turkey, the majority of them under the age of 18. With the Hilton Foundation’s support, International Medical Corps will focus on:
- Improving access to essential health care services for Syrian refugees in four urban areas of southern Turkey
- Strengthening primary health care services through the provision of medical equipment, essential medicines and clean delivery kits
- Expanding services to include maternal and newborn health, management of chronic diseases, mental health, nutrition and hygiene education
- Providing training for health personnel on primary health care delivery
- Engaging community leaders and local Turkish health care providers in identifying the most vulnerable Syrians
- Distributing critical supplies including hygiene kits, clothing, blankets, mattresses, kitchen sets and school supplies
International Medical Corps began operations in the Middle East in 2003, as one of the first international NGOs to enter Iraq following the start of the war. Since then, it has expanded its presence in the region, including launching operations in Syria starting in 2007.