Addressing Impacts of the Syria Complex Crisis

USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah with Syrian refugee family in their home in Jordan
USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah with Syrian refugee family in their home in Jordan
USAID

OVERVIEW

The United States and Jordan have partnered in development for more than 60 years.  USAID has longstanding programs in water, education, health, economic development and democratic governance. The Syria crisis—and resulting influx of refugees into Jordan—has impacted USAID’s ongoing activities, as well as Jordan’s ability to meet the needs of the people within its borders. USAID supports the government and host communities of Jordan as they cope with the crisis. We have re-oriented existing programs to account for the refugee situation and added funds to focus directly on stresses caused by the Syria crisis.

STRESSES ON JORDANIAN COMMUNITIES

  • Increased education, health and energy costs for the Government of Jordan.
  • Crowded classes and divergent student skills and educational backgrounds in some communities.
  • Pressure on scarce water, sanitation and wastewater resources.
  • Crowded health facilities and shortages of medications and other health supplies in some communities.
  • Tensions within host communities including greater competition for employment, increased costs for food and housing, and more solid waste and litter.
  • Increased potential for gender-based violence and human trafficking.

HOW USAID IS MITIGATING THE IMPACT

Direct Economic Assistance to the Government of Jordan

  • An additional $300 million in budget support and backing for a $1.25 billion loan guarantee issued in 2013. President Obama announced plans for a $1 billion follow-on loan guarantee in 2014.

Water and Sanitation

  • Construction of Za’atri-Hofa pipeline and new pumping station, and of Mafraq waste water treatment plant will significantly increase water supply and waste water treatment services in northern Jordan.
  • Additional  funds for water conservation and infrastructure renovations, including small loans and grants for water catchment and storage and support to local water companies for infrastructure repair and maintenance.

Health

  • Recently renovated hospitals, particularly those in the north, help alleviate increased demand for care and services.
  • Building the capacity of healthcare providers and establishing information management systems to improve health services for all patients, including refugees, and promote efficiency.

Education

  • Five new schools built in the north since 2011 will reduce crowding; one additional new school in the north expected to be complete in early 2015.
  • Ongoing rehabilitation/expansion of 20 schools in northern Jordan that serve over 11,000 students.
  • Additional funds focus on responding to the Syria crisis by accelerating expansion of schools, developing an early grade reading and math diagnostic tool, and scaling up a teacher training program that promotes inclusive teaching methods.

Economic Development

  • Produced an assessment on the fiscal impact of the refugee influx that will improve budget planning.
  • Support for reforms to fiscal policy and public financial management benefit all residents of Jordan.
  • Funds and training for micro- and small enterprises results in economic growth and increased investment, leading to economic growth and resiliency for vulnerable populations.

Democracy and Governance

  • A new Community Engagement Project alleviates stressors by promoting community cohesion and tolerance via community dialogue and conflict mitigation.
  • Additional funds to launch an awareness-raising campaign to address early marriage, human trafficking, child labor, and sexual and gender-based violence.

Additional Support

  • Since March 2012, USAID has supported food assistance to Syrian refugees in Jordan, including vouchers that allow them to buy food on the local market, benefitting both refugees and local merchants.
  • Physical therapy services for victims of torture.

 

 

Last updated: March 20, 2014

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