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ILO creates infrastructure jobs in earthquake-hit Syrian city

An employment-intensive project creates decent jobs for community members affected by the earthquakes in the Syrian city of Aleppo, while rehabilitating infrastructure in damaged neighbourhoods.

News | 12 May 2023
Aleppo, Syria (ILO News) The ILO has begun activities to restore safety and health in neighbourhoods in the Syrian city of Aleppo, parts of which were severely damaged by the February earthquakes that struck Türkiye and Syria.

Around 5,200 worker days will be generated through this scheme, providing 100 skilled and low-skilled workers, safety workers and group leaders with immediate short-term decent jobs, using ILO’s employment-intensive approach.

Workers are now engaged in community infrastructure works including debris removal, repair works of water sewage and water network points, as well as rehabilitation of pedestrian walkways.

The approach is part of ILO’s emergency employment scheme, which is being implemented with the Italian NGO Cooperazione Internazionale (COOPI) in close collaboration with local partners. It targets the neighbourhoods of al-Saliheen and al-Fardos, which were severally damaged by the earthquakes.

“The start of the community works marks an important milestone for the ILO’s support for earthquake recovery in Syria. We will be scaling up our livelihoods intervention to create more and better jobs for vulnerable people in affected areas, ” said Tomoki Watanabe, ILO Country Coordinator in Syria.

The work follows a series of trainings for engineers on Occupational Safety and on employment-intensive methods in construction works. First aid training and personal protective equipment required to carry out the work were provided to workers.

Employment-intensive approach offers ways to support the livelihoods of people through creating employment to secure immediate income, while rehabilitating infrastructure. It also focuses on building the skills and capacities of individuals and the community to enhance resilience against future shocks and disasters, and pave the way for longer-term decent work promotion.

According to a recent ILO assessment an estimated 170,000 workers in Syria have lost their jobs due to the earthquakes, leaving around 154,000 households and more than 725,000 individuals directly affected.