view all campaigns

Campaign Stories
  Lebanon: before and after displacement, through a Syrian refugee child's eyes
  Dialogue is the Solution in Syria, not War
  Displaced by conflict in Syria, refugee helps others
  Examining the role of women from a humanitarian perspective in response to the conflict in Syria
  Families flee Syria to protect their children
  In Syria conflict, persecution affects Muslims and Christians
  Jesuit priest: people of Homs hunger for normality
  Jesuit Refugee Service stands with Syria
  Jesuit Refugee Service Syria staff stand together in serving the displaced
  Jordan: accompaniment comes first for refugees
  Jordan: eat dust here or die in Syria
  Jordan: living in the shadow of Syria's crisis
  JRS in Iraq as winter imperils displaced families
  JRS Jordan director visits U.S. universities, parishes
  JRS urges Australia, U.S. to increase humanitarian intake
  Lebanon: educational boost for refugee children
  Lebanon: families from Syria seek safety, shelter
  Lebanon: JRS offers hope through education
  Lebanon: space for refugees from Syria to learn
  Lebanon: Syrian children need more than a traditional education
  Lebanon: Syrian refugee children counting on school
  Middle East: updates from JRS
  On the Anniversary of the War in Syria, JRS Calls for Renewed Attention
  Pope urges concrete help for refugees
  Syria: between fear of violence and the struggle to survive
  Syria: bringing families together
  Syria: daily life a struggle to survive
  Syria: amidst upheaval, JRS expands services
  Syria: enduring spirit remains despite the rubble
  Syria: five years on, time for diplomacy to deliver
  Syria: food & fuel shortages add to daily woes
  Syria: interfaith family volunteers in Aleppo
  Syria: JRS refugee center destroyed, our work continues
  Syria: let this fourth anniversary of the war be the last
  Syria: maintaining normalcy in Aleppo
  Syria: Refugees from Iraq on the sidelines of yet another conflict
  Syria: Restoring hope
  Syria: shelter and food difficult to find
  Syria: thousands more displaced by violence in Aleppo
  Syria: turning pain into their most powerful weapon
  Syria: urgent need for winter supplies
  Syria: violence in Damascus fuels hopelessness, fear
  Syria: When Hope Returns – Rama’s Story
  Syria: why people flee and why they need protection
  Syrian refugees face food cuts in Jordan, Lebanon
  Water is a precious gift in Syria
  Witnessing the hope and resilience of Syrians
Connect with us
A Syrian refugee attends school in a mosque in Lebanon's Bekaa Valley, where the local Muslim religious leader has granted JRS access to the school facilities to provide educational services to 122 Syrian refugee children through the Accelerated Learning Programme. (Don Doll, S.J. — Jesuit Refugee Service)

(Beirut) May 24, 2013 — Jesuit Refugee Service welcomed the call by Pope Francis for enhanced dialogue and cooperation between the diverse ethnic and religious communities which constitute Lebanese society. The statement, issued following a meeting between the Pope and the President of Lebanon Michel Suleiman in early May, echoes the focus of the work of JRS in this region since 2010.

The promotion of inter-religious and cultural dialogue forms the cornerstone of the work of JRS Middle East and North Africa. Volunteers and staff, predominately from Syria, Iraq, Jordan and Lebanon, mirror the ethnic, religious and socio-economic diversity of the societies in which they are working.

"In light of the emergency response to the Syrian crisis, the need to overcome sectarian divisions is greater than ever. Our response to this immense human tragedy of Syria is not to exclude anybody. Our compassion reaches out to all in need of humanitarian assistance," said JRS International Director Fr Peter Balleis, S.J.

In Jbeil and the Bekaa Valley in Lebanon, two sheikhs, Ghassan Ellaqiss and Hamza Shoker, have publicly welcomed the work of JRS in their towns. Both religious leaders have granted JRS access to school facilities in order to provide educational services to Syrian refugee children through the Accelerated Learning Programme (ALP).

"This is a wonderful example of how the Syrian tragedy draws out the best in people of goodwill. In our conversations with the two Sheikhs it was very clear that we can work and live together as people of different creeds, just as people have done in Syria and Lebanon for centuries".

The Pope also called for increased humanitarian assistance from the international community for countries hosting Syrian refugees and for those still remaining inside Syria.

In Lebanon, JRS works in five different locations, providing emergency relief in the form of food support, hygiene kits, basic medical support, educational and psychosocial support to 1,000 Syrian families.

Currently there are 6.4 million Syrians in need of urgent humanitarian assistance both inside and outside of Syria. The UN refugee agency — UNHCR — has registered 455,000 Syrians in Lebanon, but the government estimates that approximately one million Syrian refugees are residing within Lebanon, accounting for 25 percent of the population. 

To help support the work of JRS in the Middle East, please click here to make a secure online donation now.

  Follow Me on Pinterest

Countries Related to this Region
Canada, United States of America