"The True Measure of Our Humanity is How We Treat the Weakest Among Us in Times of Crisis"
More than 10,000 Syrian and other refugees are in urgent need of livelihood assistance to overcome the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in Armenia. The funds raised by this campaign will be used to provide food vouchers and financial assistance to the most vulnerable Syrian refugee families.
We fully comprehend that the entire globe is effected and traumatized by COVID-19 and the ensuing economic windfall, but we maintain the belief that humanity is as great or as weak as its response during times of crisis. As such, we hope you can donate as much as you can to our campaign to ensure the livelihood of Syrian refugees. Every dollar and cent counts! Thank you for your support. We wish you and your loved ones a healthy and safe social distancing during the global COVID-19 pandemic!
The COVID-19 Crisis in Armenia and Syrian Refugees:
The first COVID-19 case in Armenia was identified on February 29, 2020. Since then, the government of Armenia has taken several steps to mitigate the spread of the virus and address the economic windfall caused by the pandemic, including by shutting its southern border with Iran on February 24, announcing a state of emergency and a country-wide isolation on March 16, and introducing fourteen stimuli packages that aim to mitigate the economic challenges caused by COVID-19.
Although Armenia’s stimuli packages provide limited financial support to employees who lost their jobs due to the pandemic, financial support to small and medium sized businesses, and 0% loan incentives to businesses who continue paying their employees among other obligations (taxes, utility expenses, etc.), the widespread labor rights violations in Armenia (87% of Syrian workers are victims of labor rights abuses) and the absence of the rule of law prior to the outbreak of COVID-19 leaves 63% of Syrian workers and 66% of private entrepreneurs unprotected and uncovered by the stimuli packages due to lack of unregistered and undocumented employment.
With the real unemployment rate among Syrian refugees in Armenia at 44% and an additional >60% of employees and private entrepreneurs operating in the country’s notorious shadow economy, Syrian refugees are not only susceptible to contriving the coronavirus but their entire livelihood is in jeopardy during the pandemic. Most importantly, unlike the local population of Armenia which benefits from the protections afforded by homeownership (90-96% of houses and apartments were privatized following the collapse of the Soviet Union), more than 80% of Syrian refugees rent apartments and houses to secure a dwelling.
These chronic economic hardships faced by Syrian refugees on a daily basis have been amplified due to the COVID-19 crisis as landlords continue to require apartment rents while employers lay off or furlough Syrian workers without pay.
This campaign aims to raise funds to support Syrian refugees during the COVID-19 crisis through the provision of food vouchers, financial assistance and sanitation items. Every single dollar counts to protect Syrian refugees in these difficult times.
Aleppo Compatriotic Charitable Organization (Aleppo-NGO), established in Armenia in 2013 and registered in the United States of America in 2014, is the leading grassroots organization, formed by Syrian-Armenian women, supporting refugees in Armenia. The organization serves to protect, support, and empower Syrians in Armenia; implements innovative and sustainable programs to contribute to the settlement and integration of Syrian refugees; and ensures the protection of human and refugee rights in the social, cultural, and educational spheres, while contributing to the development of Armenia.
Over 7,000 Syrians and other refugees have been supported by Aleppo NGO since 2013. Since its establishment, the organization has partnered with more than 50 local and international organizations and has implemented more than 40 emergency and long-term projects, programs, and advocacy and fundraising campaigns. The organization has provided more than $2.2 million in various forms of support for Syrian and other refugees in Armenia.
Aleppo-NGO’s primary projects and programs have focused on the provision of humanitarian aid and rental subsidies; the allocation of free of charge apartments to vulnerable refugees; the establishment of a social enterprise to employ Syrian women and persons with disabilities; and the organization of emergency evacuation of Internally Displaced Persons from Syria and their resettlement in Armenia.
Partners and Donors (Alphabetical Order):
Since 2013, the generosity of individual donors from all over the world has been the cornerstone of our organization’s ability to fund emergency projects and programs. However, over the years, we have partnered with more than 50 local and international organizations to carry out several of our 40+ programs and projects. The list below are some of the organizations we have partnered and collaborated with to carry out our life saving mission:
-Armenia Artsakh Fund
-Armenian Community in Denmark
-Armenian Relief Fund
-Embassy of Japan in Armenia
-Eurasia Partnership Foundation
-Focus of Children Now
-Global Hope Network
-Help Your Brother Charitable Fund
-St. Kevork Armenian Apostolic Church of Houston, Texas (USA)
-“St. Nerses the Great” Charitable Organization-NGO (USA)
-Quality Schools International (QSI)
-Save the Children
-Savings Banks Foundation for International Cooperation
-US Department of State
-US Embassy in Armenia
- World Council of Churches-Armenia Round Table Foundation
-World Vision Armenia
- Jason Sohigian