The governorates of Al Anbar and Babil in Iraq have been the scene of heavy acts of violence since the beginning of the year, causing mass displacement among vulnerable communities while hundreds of other families were left behind in their besieged hometowns. Despite the escalation of violence, the Iraqi Red Crescent Society (IRCS) staff and volunteers continued delivering their relief services to the communities who were most affected, and succeeded in evacuating hundreds of families trapped in their homes.
Al Anbar governorate in particular is witnessing dire humanitarian conditions caused by ongoing violence that started at the beginning of 2014 and continues until this day. During the last few weeks, more than 10,000 families were forced to leave their homes and belongings behind in the city of Hit seeking safe shelters in other areas of the governorate, living mainly in public places, schools, and unfinished buildings.
When the acts of violence broke out in Al Anbar, the Iraqi Red Crescent volunteers were mobilised and deployed immediately to serve vulnerable families. Since then, the volunteers have provided more than 5,000 families with hot meals, distributed around 3,200 food baskets and 600 blankets, in addition to offering psycho-social support to the affected families.
In the city of Fallujah, as well, significantly deteriorating humanitarian conditions have been recorded. However, and despite the siege imposed on the city, Iraqi Red Crescent volunteers managed to deliver medicines and other medical requirements to the main hospital in Fallujah.
Similarly, on the outskirts of the governorate of Babil, the city of Jurf Al Sakhar witnessed severe acts of violence which left more than 250 families besieged and in desperate need of assistance. Iraqi Red Crescent volunteers evacuated and transported the families as well as, provided them with shelter, food and essential relief items.
Iraqi Red Crescent Society volunteers were at the forefront since the onset of the renewed violence to address the needs of communities affected, whether in ensuring their access to food and other non-food items, or in evacuating those trapped inside their houses in besieged cities to which other humanitarian organisations could not have access.