In response to the earthquake that hit Syria and Türkiye on 6 February 2023, the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) Principals designated a humanitarian system-wide Scale-Up on 14 February 2023. As part of the Scale-up, an Operational Peer Review (OPR) mission to Syria took place from 2 to 13 July 2023 upon the invitation of the Regional Humanitarian Coordinator (RHC), Deputy RHC (DRHC) in Gaziantep, and Humanitarian Coordinator (HC) in Damascus.
The purpose of the OPR was to provide the humanitarian actors managing the earthquake response in Syria with an opportunity to review the direction and performance of the ongoing response and reflect on future planning: namely the Humanitarian Liaison Group (HLG) in Gaziantep, Humanitarian Country Team (HCT) in Damascus, and Strategic Steering Group (SSG) in Amman. In addition to partners in these three hubs, the OPR team engaged with humanitarians and affected communities in Idlib, Jindairis, Latakia, Homs and Aleppo. The OPR focused on the most earthquake-affected areas, and therefore did not cover north-east Syria given the earthquake’s significantly lower impact on the region.
An OPR is not a real-time evaluation. Rather, it seeks to identify immediate and rapid corrective actions needed to improve the delivery of humanitarian assistance and support the country teams to meet objectives or reduce gaps. The mission findings will also be used to inform future humanitarian responses.