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A New Year Brings New Hope from Canada for Syrian Relief Efforts

Plan welcomes Government of Canada’s decision to extend matching donation period

TORONTO, January 7, 2016 – Plan Canada is pleased with the Government of Canada’s announcement to extend the deadline for matching contributions to registered Canadian charities to support humanitarian relief efforts for the Syrian crisis. The decision means Canadians will continue to be able to double the impact of their donations to Syrian relief efforts until February 29, 2016, with the Government setting aside one dollar for the Syria Emergency Relief Fund for each dollar contributed to a charity by generous Canadians.

“We welcome the Government of Canada’s decision to extend the matching donation program for Syrian relief efforts,” said Marie Staunton, Interim CEO of Plan Canada. “We hope Canadians will continue to be generous in their response to this crisis, not only through sponsoring refugees to come to Canada, but also by contributing to agencies like Plan, who are involved in life-saving work to help Syrian refugees, especially girls and boys.”

As part of its commitment to help during global humanitarian emergencies, Plan International is responding directly to the needs of Syrian refugees in Egypt, and is working through partners to provide assistance in Syria, Lebanon and Iraq. The main focus of our work is supporting efforts to improve access to education for refugee children, many of whom have been out of school for months or even years. Plan is also active in protecting the rights of refugee girls and boys, particularly in cases of forced labour, child marriage or other forms of exploitation. In collaboration with other members of the Humanitarian Coalition, Plan supports efforts to boost humanitarian assistance to Syria’s neighbours, who have borne the brunt of the refugee crisis since the conflict began in March 2011. The conflict in Syria has led to the largest humanitarian crisis in a generation, affecting more than 12 million people, including more than four million people who have been forced to leave the country.

“Almost five years after it started, Syria’s agony continues and the suffering of children and their families shows no signs of ending,” added Staunton. “While a new year brings new opportunities for millions of Canadians, there’s little hope for millions of Syrians unless the global community, including Canada, continues to give generously to help Syria’s refugees and displaced people within the country. There is no time to lose.”

About Plan and the Because I am a Girl initiative

Founded in 1937, Plan is one of the world’s oldest and largest international development agencies, working in partnership with millions of people around the world to end global poverty. Not for profit, independent and inclusive of all faiths and cultures, Plan has only one agenda: to improve the lives of children. Because I am a Girl is Plan’s global initiative to end gender inequality, promote girls’ rights and lift millions of girls – and everyone around them – out of poverty. Visit and for more information.

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Media contacts

Bob Neufeld, Senior Media and Public Relations Manager, Plan Canada
T: (416) 920-1654 ext. 364 | C: (647) 461-2578 |