The EU has boosted the budget for humanitarian assistance for Syrian refugees to more than €2 billion. The funding will cover health, education, municipal and social infrastructure, and socio-economic support, aiming to speed up the implementation of the Facility for Refugees in Turkey. The budget is meant to provide assistance to address urgent needs of refugees in Turkey and the very first tranche of funding will provide operational costs of and access to education and healthcare services for Syrian refugees and their children.
The second tranche will focus on education and health-related infrastructure and it will be implemented through agreements with international financial institutions while the third one will include an allocation to top up the EU Regional Trust Fund in response to the Syrian crisis, allowing it to continue funding the bottom-up assistance to refugees and host communities. The Facility for Refugees in Turkey also includes an allocation to allow international financial institutions to build a project pipeline for potential future projects under the Facility. The latest boost in financing comes on top of a total of €740 million that has been allocated for humanitarian and non-humanitarian assistance to date, making the total committed under the Facility €2.155 billion.
The EU already has humanitarian aid in place that aims to help refugees in Turkey. The new funding will be channeled to NGOs and humanitarian organizations in partnerships with various local non-governmental organizations and in coordination with government service departments. The EU-funded humanitarian projects in Turkey cover the most basic needs of vulnerable refugees and asylum seekers and include support for access to primary health care, food and assistance for people wounded in war. Projects with a focus on education will cover school transport and access to non-formal education. A special emphasis is put on ensuring the protection of the most vulnerable, in particular children.