Although the Syrian conflict has been going on for almost five years, it’s taken graphic images of dead children washing up on Turkish beaches for the world to really pay attention. The photos are disturbing, but it’s also disturbing that so many of us have largely ignored the Syrian crisis until we were confronted by heartbreaking images of suffering and death.
Over 12 million people in Syria are in need of humanitarian assistance, over 5 million children have been affected by the crisis, over 7 million people have been displaced internally in Syria and over 4 million have been displaced to other countries. It’s a crisis of massive scale, and there’s no sign that it is going to get better any time soon.
As with most major crises, the best way to help is by giving financial support to those who can make the biggest difference.
To that end, here are five charities who are doing important work on the ground in the affected regions and who could use our donations. Each of these organizations has an “A” rating with Charity Watch and a 4-star rating with Charity Navigator.
Please consider giving to at least one of them…or even all five.
- Save the Children — “Save the Children’s emergency responders are working across Europe providing aid and support. But they need your help to reach more refugee children. Your support will help us reach desperate children across Europe and in other locations where refugees are on the move.”
- Mercy Corps — “Your gift to our Syria Response Fund will help deliver more lifesaving aid to Syrian families. As the severity of this crisis reaches an all-time high, your compassion is more important than ever. Mercy Corps is on the ground helping the most vulnerable families get the food, water, shelter and support they need.”
- International Rescue Committee — “Your support will help us provide immediate assistance to refugees in Europe, including Greece, and to displaced people in Iraq, Yemen, and in other crisis zones around the world. Your contribution will also help us deliver rapid humanitarian relief to families uprooted by natural disasters, including the recent flooding in Myanmar and Pakistan.”
- Doctors Without Borders USA — “For Doctors Without Borders, the ability to respond quickly to medical humanitarian emergencies is crucial to saving more lives. Unrestricted funds allow us to allocate our resources most efficiently and where the needs are greatest.”
- United States Fund for UNICEF — “Your support will help deliver desperately needed water, food, and medical supplies to children in need worldwide, but it will also prove that these children aren’t invisible. It will prove that their lives matter — and that there are people willing to stand up for them right now.”
And, for the next week, I’ll match any donations made in response to this post, up to a total of $500. Just mention the amount you’re giving and to whom in the comments below. Wow you guys are awesome…$650 raised in a matter of hours. I’ll go ahead and match that amount and divvy it up between the organizations I listed…thank you all!
Dan is the Executive Editor of the Unfundamentalist Christians blog. He is a writer, graphic designer and IT specialist. He lives in Montana, is married and has two cats.