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Introduction to Iraq  

Known as the cradle of civilization, Iraq has a rich history of tradition, large reserves of natural resources and numerous renowned conflicts. The desert riddled and mountainous country houses people of various ethnic groups including Arab, Kurdish, Turkmen people and more. 

With a population of over 40.2 million, including over 2 million internally displaced people and 250,000 Syrian refugees, the people of Iraq have endured consecutive crises over the past 2 decades. 

Prone to political instability, violence, corruption, armed conflict and natural disasters, Iraq is an anomaly of an upper middle-income country deemed to be at “very high risk” of a humanitarian crisis that requires international assistance.

The newly formed 2020 government is facing significant long-lasting challenges including insecurity, political unrest, protests against corruption, and the oil price decline, which have led to severe economic hardship and an inability to provide basic services such as electricity and water. 

Without access to clean safe water, education, health services and a stable income, millions of people in Iraq are living in poverty, facing poor health and a bleak future.

Why do the people of Iraq need your support?  

For people across Iraq, life is incredibly challenging:

  • 4.1 million Iraqis are in need of humanitarian assistance (Humanitarian Needs Overview, 2021) 
  • Nearly 3 out of 5 children in Iraq have no access to safely managed water services (UNICEF, 2021)
  • 4.5 million Iraqis are at risk of poverty and deprivation due to the impact of Covid-19 (UNICEF, 2020)
  • Around 920,000 Iraqis are food insecure (USAID, 2020)

Islamic Relief in Iraq  

Islamic Relief started its work in Iraq in 2003 during the war, where we actively worked throughout the military incursions and were one of the few aid agencies that continued our work during and  after the war.

Upon opening our permanent office in Baghdad in 2003, we continued to work alongside local communities to provide immediate assistance such as emergency food supplies and health equipment, as well as offering additional health and psychological support through development projects.

To date, Islamic Relief Canada has supported over 170,000 individuals in Iraq with various forms of shelter, non-food items, water and sanitation assistance, as well as protection and health services. We have provided thousands of people with food parcels and non-food items, such as blankets and winter clothing, to help them cope during the harsh winter season.

We also distribute Qurbani and Ramadan food assistance, benefiting thousands of Iraqi families, and provide food aid and educational support to over 400 orphans through our one-to-one sponsorship program.

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