Mother and young daughter in Iraq meeting with an Action Against Hunger worker in Iraq


Millions of people who have had to flee their homes in Iraq still need humanitarian assistance.

Iraq’s 2014-2017 conflict with Islamic State (IS), resulted in several waves of displacement.

The time spent under IS rule and the ongoing conflict has exacerbated the problems faced by communities. Houses and water supplies were damaged or destroyed, people had limited livelihood opportunities, and there was a breakdown of social cohesion due to past hostilities between different groups.

Although the conflict with IS has since ended, vulnerable communities in Iraq are still dealing with the consequences.

Country facts

  • 38.4m

    Iraq has a population of 38.4 million people.

  • 120

    The country is ranked 120th out of 189 countries in the Human Development Index.

  • 4.1m

    More than 4 million Iraqis are in need of humanitarian assistance.

Action Against Hunger’s work in Iraq

Our key focus in Iraq is on food security and livelihoods, water, sanitation and hygiene programmes and mental health and care practices. We take an integrated approach between these sectors to meet the needs of the Iraqi people.

Our Iraq mission has an established presence in Mosul, Dohuk, Sinjar, Sinune, Erbil and Baghdad. We’re also opening a new base in Basra in southern Iraq to expand our presence in the country and extend our support to local people.

Our reach

  • 78,215

    We reached almost 80,000 people through our programmes in Iraq in 2019.

  • 162

    We have 162 staff based in Erbil, Dohuk and Ninewah.

  • 2013

    We started working in Iraq in 2013.

The impact of Covid-19 in Iraq

Iraq has been heavily affec­ted by the Covid-19 pandemic. Initial strict curfews prevented the movement of humanitarian workers, hugely affecting our ability to help those on the move.

All 19 Iraqi governorates have had confirmed infections of Covid-19. The strict preventative measures and curfews put in place, including the shutdown of educational institutions and businesses, has made everyday life even more difficult for communities in Iraq.

Children are now spending most of their days indoors with no access to modern technology to allow for remote learning. Refugees and displaced people are struggling to survive in these critical times. Between lack of income to purchase basic food items and medications, confined spaces and the Covid-19 pandemic, they have been under immense stress. These combined worries, have caused serious damage to their mental and physical health.

Our response to Covid-19 in Iraq

After the government announced the lift of restrictions and the reopening of airports, public spaces and malls, our teams in Iraq are now working against the clock to meet the needs of the Iraqi people and displaced and refugee communities.

So far we have:

  • distributed 4,000 hygiene kits to vulne­rable families and internally displaced persons in West Mosul
  • facilitated awareness sessions on Covid-19
  • provided psychological support

We’re also resuming our usual activities in Mosul, Dohuk and Sinjar. We have adapted our way of working by using personal protective equipment, reducing group sizes and adjusting our surrounding to allow for safe practices.

Iraqi woman looking to camera

Save lives today

Help more vulnerable communities in Iraq tackle hunger today.

Donate now



Syrian refugee children.

Syria’s ongoing conflict has shattered the country’s infrastructures, forcing millions to flee.


A Syrian refugee girl in Lebanon.

The Syrian crisis continues to generate political, social and economic pressure in Lebanon.