It seems that every time you turn on the television or open a news site, there are more and more devastating updates from the war-torn Syrian city of Aleppo. Aleppo was once one of the biggest and most populous cities in Syria, with a large tourist draw to its incredible ancient ruins and rich cultural history. Now this once-vibrant city is collapsed to rubble, and the bombings show no sign of stopping.
Nearly 5 million Syrians have fled their home country, making the situation for those left behind more dire than ever, with few resources and a desperate need for support.
Here are 10 reliable philanthropic organisations you can donate to in order to help ease the desperate situation in Aleppo:
The Red Cross, in partnership with the Red Crescent, is providing essential food and medicine to the besieged locals in Aleppo. They als have teams on the ground providing medical care and ambulance services, and are supporting 1,000 families who have fled the area.
The White Helmets, officially known as the Syrian Civil Defense, is a volunteer civil defence non-governmental organisation which works to rescue people from the rubble of destroyed buildings. Their aptly-named “Hero Fund” supports medical care for injured White Helmets and the families of volunteers who have been killed in action.
There are very few doctors and functioning medical centers remaining in Aleppo, making the support of Doctors Without Borders more important than ever. MSF is no longer able to access the besieged city of Aleppo, but they support eight locally-run hospitals inside the city limits, run six medical facilities across northern Syria, and support more than 150 health centers and hospitals across the country.
Located just outside of Aleppo, this non-profit organization gives medical care, shelter, food, and water to displaced people and helps rebuild their lives through empowerment grants for those seeking work opportunities and trying to get their children back into education. They are already feeding more than 20,000 people and providing shelter for those without homes.
This charity started out providing medical aid but has since expanded into food, shelter and education. Perhaps most importantly, Syria Relief has started a mental health centre to help treat the deeply traumatising consequences of living in a war zone. They also have a specialized project that provides prosthetic limbs.
The IRC has been helping in Syria since 2012. Their far-reaching work has included supporting health clinics, providing displaced people with clothes and emergency supplies, providing children’s education and counselling, and building economic stability with job training.
This charity takes emergency aid directly to those living under threat and trying to survive in extreme conditions. They provide food, clothing, water and sanitation, as well as medical aid. They also provide advocacy and support for other organizations on the ground.
The Karam Foundation runs an emergency aid program for the children of Syria, providing emergency relief for Syrian schools as well as supporting refugee children who have fled the country.
This charity is one of the longest-running on the ground in Syria and therefore one of the most established and knowledgeable in the needs of the remaining communities in Aleppo. They have so far helped more than 3 million people, providing food and medical support to thousands of families and distributing winter survival kits.
The Syrian American Medical Society provides crucial medical treatment on the ground in southern Syria and for Syrian refugees in Turkey, Lebanon, and Jordan. They also provide medical training and have already treated more than 2.6 million patients and supported more than 1,700 health workers.