Publication date

7th October 2016


Mary Griffin, Helen Stawski, Mark Curtis



Invisible Lives

How the international community is failing Syrian women refugees

The focus of the report is the situation facing Syrian women living in Lebanon and Iraq, two of the countries where Islamic Relief is delivering emergency food and shelter, alongside interventions to support longer-term needs around skills development, health and education. Based on a detailed analysis of programmes and funding for livelihoods, education and preventing violence against women, Invisible Lives provides key recommendations for the UK Government and the wider donor community to strengthen and expand current interventions aimed at building the longterm economic empowerment of refugee women. This includes working with the private sector to support the economic development of Syria’s neighbours to ensure they are able to continue to host the majority of refugees in the region. As part of our research we spoke directly to Syrian women themselves, encouraging them to speak in their own words about the daily challenges they face and their hopes and dreams for the future. By making their lives more visible to the international community we hope to improve interventions to develop the resilience of female refugees. We also call for a significant increase in funding to fulfil the international pledges and commitments made at the London Syria Conference in February 2016. Only then can the invisible lives of Syrian women move from the periphery to the forefront of the debate and of the humanitarian response



Stawski, H, Curtis M, Griffin, M (2016) Invisible Lives, Islamic Relief Worldwide, Birmingham, UK.


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