The Syria Campaign

What it takes to save a life

A story of hope shining from one of the darkest corners of humanity

In the deadliest conflict of our era an unlikely group of heroes has emerged. Former tailors, bakers, teachers and other ordinary Syrians have banded together to save lives from the rubble of bombardment and the violence of war in Syria. Forming the Syria Civil Defence, their distinctive uniform of a white helmet now symbolises hope for millions.

When the bombs rain down, the White Helmets rush in. In a place where public services no longer function these unarmed volunteers risk their lives to help anyone in need, regardless of their religion or politics. These volunteer rescue workers have saved over 73,530 lives.

The White Helmets motto is taken from the Quran: 'to save a life is to save all of humanity'. In a conflict where too many have chosen violence, the White Helmets wake up everyday to save the lives others are trying so hard to take.

Their bravery has inspired people across the planet -- from the children in Syria who play at being rescue workers, to the students in Norway who awarded them their town’s peace prize, and to their nomination now for the Nobel Peace Prize.

The most popular Nobel Peace Prize nomination in history?

133 organisations support the White Helmets for the Nobel Peace Prize

Syrian Organisations
  • Baytna Syria
  • Committee for Civil Peace in the Governorate of Suweida
  • Damascus Centre for Human Rights Studies
  • Daraya Local Council
  • Dawlaty
  • Douma Local Council
  • Emissa for Development
  • Free Syrian Lawyers Union
  • Ghiras Foundation
  • Ghosn Zeitoun (Olive Branch)
  • Human Care
  • Kesh Malek
  • Local Administration Councils Unit (LACU)
  • Raqqa is Being Silently Slaughtered
  • Salamiyeh Revolutionary Union
View the full list
Individuals
  • Alejandro González Iñárritu
  • Alfonso Cuarón
  • Alicia Keys, artist/activist
  • Andrew Mitchell, UK Member of Parliament
  • Andy Serkis, actor/director
  • Anne McLaughlin, UK Member of Parliament
  • Annika Rabo, Stockholm University
  • Aziz Ansari, comedian/actor
  • Bear Grylls, Chief Scout
  • Ben Affleck, filmmaker
  • Chiwetel Ejiofor, actor
  • Chris Martin, musician
  • Damon Albarn, musician
  • Daniel Craig, actor and UNMAS Goodwill Ambassador
  • Daniel Day Lewis, actor
  • Daniel Serwer, Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies
  • Dave Eggers, author
  • Dr Rowan Williams, Former Archbishop of Canterbury
  • Edward Norton, actor and UN Goodwill Ambassador for Biodiversity
  • Fred Kempe, Atlantic Council
  • George Clooney
  • Glenys Kinnock, Baroness Kinnock of Holyhead
  • Guy Berryman, musician
  • Isla Fisher, actor
  • Jeff Smith, UK Member of Parliament
  • Jefferson Hack
  • Jo Cox, UK Member of Parliament
  • Joe Wright, director
  • Joel Kinnaman, actor
  • John Shattuck, Rector of the Central European University
  • Jonny Buckland, musician
  • Juliet Stevenson, actress
  • Justin Timberlake, entertainer
  • Karen Elson
  • Karl Ove Knausgård, author
  • Linn Ullman, novelist
  • Marjane Satrapi, director, writer and illustrator
  • Mark Rylance, actor
  • Michael Palin, actor, writer and traveller
  • Michael Williams, Chatham House
  • Michelle Yeoh, actor and UNDP Goodwill Ambassador
  • Miles Teller, actor
  • Padma Lakshmi, host and author
  • Pedro Almodóvar, film-maker
  • Philip S Khoury, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
  • Ridley Scott, director and producer
  • Rodrigo y Gabriela, musicians
  • Roger Godsiff, UK Member of Parliament
  • Sacha Baron Cohen, actor, comedian and screenwriter
  • Sofie Gabrol, actor,Susanne Bier, director
  • Susan Sarandon, actress and activist
  • Thandie Newton, actor
  • Vanessa Redgrave, actress
  • Wendy Chamberlin, Middle East Institute
View the full list
Around the World
  • 2020 A Year Without War
  • Adopt A Revolution
  • Ali Akbar Welfare Trust
  • The Asfari Foundation
  • Association Medina
  • Brain Hug LTD.
  • Bridge of Peace
  • Broederlijk Delen
  • CODSSY
  • Campaña Colombiana contra el Secuestro
  • Carl Wilkens Fellowship
  • Christian Aid
  • Doctors of the World UK
  • Eastern European Development Institute
  • Epsilon Foundation
View the full list

To see the full list click here. If you or your organisation would like to support click here.

We go to save as many people as we can. If one person was alive that's enough for us to take the risk.

- Khaled Farah, White Helmet

Qasem

Baker

Ali

Fireman

Mohamad

Painter

Ghassan

Firefighter

Khaled

Tailor

Emad

Firefighter

Abed

Pharmacist

Ammar Haj Omar

X-ray technician

Mohammad Lulu

University Student, Applied Chemistry

Mohamad

Builder

Thaer Jaqqal

Firefighter

Ahmad

Salesman

Everyday heroes of peace

Bakers, tailors, engineers, pharmacists, painters, carpenters, students and more, the White Helmets are volunteers from all walks of life.

I help injured civilians every day, knowing that this will give my daughter and my country a better future.

- Fatima, White Helmet

The most dangerous job in the world

When the bombs rain down, the White Helmets rush in

In late 2012 the Syrian Government began dropping bombs on homes from planes miles above the civilians sleeping in their beds. These strikes were the first explosions of an aerial war on civilians that would lead to tens of thousands of deaths, millions displaced and an unrelenting sense of terror in the heart of every Syrian.

Attacks from the sky would demolish entire city blocks, leaving civilians trapped under slabs of concrete, trapped under the weight of their former homes. When this happened the bravest would rush in to rescue everyone they could. Across Syria these volunteers formed into teams -- their mission: to save lives. Three years later they have saved more than 73,530 lives.

The White Helmets arrive to the scene fully aware that warplanes and helicopters often circle back to drop bombs on rescue operations. 145 volunteers have been killed in the line of duty, the majority from these 'double-tap' strikes.

The volunteers save people on all sides of the conflict - pledging commitment to the principles of “Humanity, Solidarity, Impartiality” as outlined by the International Civil Defence Organisation. The White Helmets mostly deal with the aftermath of government air attacks. Yet they have risked sniper fire to rescue bodies of government soldiers to give them a proper burial.

As well as saving lives, the White Helmets deliver public services to nearly 7 million people, including reconnecting electrical cables, providing safety information to children and securing bombed buildings. They are the largest civil society organisation operating in areas outside of government control, and their actions provide hope for millions.


It's impossible to leave alive

When I want to save someone’s life I don’t care if he was an enemy or a friend, what concerns me is to save the soul that might die.

- Abed, White Helmet

Organised by The Syria Campaign

The Syria Campaign is a human rights group advocating for the protection of civilians by elevating the demands and voices of Syrians inside the country trapped between dictatorship and extremism.

We aren't the Syria Civil Defence, but we think that what they do is amazing and should be supported by people around the world.

Five years after the peaceful uprising in Syria, politicians and the media have largely forgotten what the UN calls "the greatest humanitarian tragedy of our time". But we haven't. That's why we started The Syria Campaign, to build a global movement of solidarity and action working toward a peaceful and dignified future for all Syrians.

The Syria Campaign
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White Helmets / Syria Civil Defence
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For media enquiries for the White Helmets, email: [email protected]

For media enquiries to The Syria Campaign, email: [email protected]

All other questions and requests should go to: [email protected]

For facts and background information about the White Helmets: Media Briefing

Thousands of us campaigned to get the Nobel Peace Prize for the heroic rescue workers of the White Helmets. They didn’t win it this year, but we can step in and raise the $1 million in prize money that they would have gotten. Let’s show them our love and solidarity from around the world -- get the White Helmets $1 million to treat wounded volunteers and replace rescue equipment and ambulances that have been bombed. Give now!

close
  • Baytna Syria
  • Committee for Civil Peace in the Governorate of Suweida
  • Damascus Centre for Human Rights Studies
  • Daraya Local Council
  • Dawlaty
  • Douma Local Council
  • Emissa for Development
  • Free Syrian Lawyers Union
  • Ghiras Foundation
  • Ghosn Zeitoun (Olive Branch)
  • Human Care
  • Kesh Malek
  • Local Administration Councils Unit (LACU)
  • Raqqa is Being Silently Slaughtered
  • Salamiyeh Revolutionary Union
  • Save a Soul Organisation for Medical Relief and Development
  • Sham for Social Development
  • Syrian Centre for Legal Studies and Research
  • Syrian Center for Media and Freedom of Expression
  • Syrian Citizenship Association
  • Syrian Economic Forum
  • Syrian Network for Human Rights
  • The Syrian Nonviolent Movement
  • Syrian Women's Network
  • The Day After
  • The United Medical Office of Eastern Ghouta
  • Violations Documentation Centre
  • Women’s Centre of Al Ghouta for Training and Rehabilitation
  • Women Now for Development
  • Wisdom House
  • 2020 A Year Without War
  • Adopt A Revolution
  • Ali Akbar Welfare Trust
  • The Asfari Foundation
  • Association Medina
  • Brain Hug LTD.
  • Bridge of Peace
  • Broederlijk Delen
  • CODSSY
  • Campaña Colombiana contra el Secuestro
  • Carl Wilkens Fellowship
  • Christian Aid
  • Doctors of the World UK
  • Eastern European Development Institute
  • Epsilon Foundation
  • Fazaa for Development and Relief
  • GOAL Global
  • Gangaram Sangeet Trust
  • Global Network for Change
  • Helen Bamber Foundation
  • House of Peace
  • Ibn Khaldun Institute
  • Poland
  • Insaan Rights Watch - Syria
  • International Trade Union Confederation
  • Islamic Relief UK
  • Jamiya Project
  • Karam Foundation
  • Kayany Foundation
  • Kindern Helfen e.V.
  • LifeBoat gGmbH
  • Maram Foundation for Relief and Development
  • Mayday Rescue
  • Minnesota Committee in Solidarity with the People of Syria (MN CISPOS)
  • Mirum - India
  • Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies
  • Network of Arab-American Professionals (NAAP)
  • Pax Christi Vlaanderen
  • Peace & Justice for Syria
  • REACT Philippines - Inc.
  • Rahma Relief Foundation
  • RemovetheWall.org
  • Rethink Rebuild Society
  • Revivre
  • Rising Brook Baptist Church
  • SPACE - Syrian Peace Action Centre
  • Scotland4Syria
  • Speak N Meet
  • Stop Genocide Now
  • Students Organize for Syria
  • Syria Relief and Development
  • Syrian American Council
  • Syrian American Council - Houston Chapter
  • Syrian American Medical Society
  • Syrian Association of Yorkshire
  • Syrian Association of Yorkshire
  • Syrian Emergency Task Force
  • Syrian Society of Nottinghamshire
  • Så Syrien
  • Trocaire
  • Union of Medical Care and Relief Organizations (UOSSM)
  • United Christian Ministry at Northern AZ University
  • University of the Arts Students' Union
  • Valley Syrian Relief Committee
  • WATAN
  • Wake Up Genève
  • Zero Waste International Trust
  • Alejandro González Iñárritu
  • Alfonso Cuarón
  • Alicia Keys, artist/activist
  • Andrew Mitchell, UK Member of Parliament
  • Andy Serkis, actor/director
  • Anne McLaughlin, UK Member of Parliament
  • Annika Rabo, Stockholm University
  • Aziz Ansari, comedian/actor
  • Bear Grylls, Chief Scout
  • Ben Affleck, filmmaker
  • Chiwetel Ejiofor, actor
  • Chris Martin, musician
  • Damon Albarn, musician
  • Daniel Craig, actor and UNMAS Goodwill Ambassador
  • Daniel Day Lewis, actor
  • Daniel Serwer, Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies
  • Dave Eggers, author
  • Dr Rowan Williams, Former Archbishop of Canterbury
  • Edward Norton, actor and UN Goodwill Ambassador for Biodiversity
  • Fred Kempe, Atlantic Council
  • George Clooney
  • Glenys Kinnock, Baroness Kinnock of Holyhead
  • Guy Berryman, musician
  • Isla Fisher, actor
  • Jeff Smith, UK Member of Parliament
  • Jefferson Hack
  • Jo Cox, UK Member of Parliament
  • Joe Wright, director
  • Joel Kinnaman, actor
  • John Shattuck, Rector of the Central European University
  • Jonny Buckland, musician
  • Juliet Stevenson, actress
  • Justin Timberlake, entertainer
  • Karen Elson
  • Karl Ove Knausgård, author
  • Linn Ullman, novelist
  • Marjane Satrapi, director, writer and illustrator
  • Mark Rylance, actor
  • Michael Palin, actor, writer and traveller
  • Michael Williams, Chatham House
  • Michelle Yeoh, actor and UNDP Goodwill Ambassador
  • Miles Teller, actor
  • Padma Lakshmi, host and author
  • Pedro Almodóvar, film-maker
  • Philip S Khoury, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
  • Ridley Scott, director and producer
  • Rodrigo y Gabriela, musicians
  • Roger Godsiff, UK Member of Parliament
  • Sacha Baron Cohen, actor, comedian and screenwriter
  • Sofie Gabrol, actor,Susanne Bier, director
  • Susan Sarandon, actress and activist
  • Thandie Newton, actor
  • Vanessa Redgrave, actress
  • Wendy Chamberlin, Middle East Institute
  • Will Champion, musician
  • Zoe Saldana, actress
close
  • Baytna Syria
  • Committee for Civil Peace in the Governorate of Suweida
  • Damascus Centre for Human Rights Studies
  • Daraya Local Council
  • Dawlaty
  • Douma Local Council
  • Emissa for Development
  • Free Syrian Lawyers Union
  • Ghiras Foundation
  • Ghosn Zeitoun (Olive Branch)
  • Human Care
  • Kesh Malek
  • Local Administration Councils Unit (LACU)
  • Raqqa is Being Silently Slaughtered
  • Salamiyeh Revolutionary Union
  • Save a Soul Organisation for Medical Relief and Development
  • Sham for Social Development
  • Syrian Centre for Legal Studies and Research
  • Syrian Center for Media and Freedom of Expression
  • Syrian Citizenship Association
  • Syrian Economic Forum
  • Syrian Network for Human Rights
  • The Syrian Nonviolent Movement
  • Syrian Women's Network
  • The Day After
  • The United Medical Office of Eastern Ghouta
  • Violations Documentation Centre
  • Women’s Centre of Al Ghouta for Training and Rehabilitation
  • Women Now for Development
  • Wisdom House
close
  • 2020 A Year Without War
  • Adopt A Revolution
  • Ali Akbar Welfare Trust
  • The Asfari Foundation
  • Association Medina
  • Brain Hug LTD.
  • Bridge of Peace
  • Broederlijk Delen
  • CODSSY
  • Campaña Colombiana contra el Secuestro
  • Carl Wilkens Fellowship
  • Christian Aid
  • Doctors of the World UK
  • Eastern European Development Institute
  • Epsilon Foundation
  • Fazaa for Development and Relief
  • GOAL Global
  • Gangaram Sangeet Trust
  • Global Network for Change
  • Helen Bamber Foundation
  • House of Peace
  • Ibn Khaldun Institute
  • Poland
  • Insaan Rights Watch - Syria
  • International Trade Union Confederation
  • Islamic Relief UK
  • Jamiya Project
  • Karam Foundation
  • Kayany Foundation
  • Kindern Helfen e.V.
  • LifeBoat gGmbH
  • Maram Foundation for Relief and Development
  • Mayday Rescue
  • Minnesota Committee in Solidarity with the People of Syria (MN CISPOS)
  • Mirum - India
  • Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies
  • Network of Arab-American Professionals (NAAP)
  • Pax Christi Vlaanderen
  • Peace & Justice for Syria
  • REACT Philippines - Inc.
  • Rahma Relief Foundation
  • RemovetheWall.org
  • Rethink Rebuild Society
  • Revivre
  • Rising Brook Baptist Church
  • SPACE - Syrian Peace Action Centre
  • Scotland4Syria
  • Speak N Meet
  • Stop Genocide Now
  • Students Organize for Syria
  • Syria Relief and Development
  • Syrian American Council
  • Syrian American Council - Houston Chapter
  • Syrian American Medical Society
  • Syrian Association of Yorkshire
  • Syrian Association of Yorkshire
  • Syrian Emergency Task Force
  • Syrian Society of Nottinghamshire
  • Så Syrien
  • Trocaire
  • Union of Medical Care and Relief Organizations (UOSSM)
  • United Christian Ministry at Northern AZ University
  • University of the Arts Students' Union
  • Valley Syrian Relief Committee
  • WATAN
  • Wake Up Genève
  • Zero Waste International Trust
close
  • Alejandro González Iñárritu
  • Alfonso Cuarón
  • Alicia Keys, artist/activist
  • Andrew Mitchell, UK Member of Parliament
  • Andy Serkis, actor/director
  • Anne McLaughlin, UK Member of Parliament
  • Annika Rabo, Stockholm University
  • Aziz Ansari, comedian/actor
  • Bear Grylls, Chief Scout
  • Ben Affleck, filmmaker
  • Chiwetel Ejiofor, actor
  • Chris Martin, musician
  • Damon Albarn, musician
  • Daniel Craig, actor and UNMAS Goodwill Ambassador
  • Daniel Day Lewis, actor
  • Daniel Serwer, Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies
  • Dave Eggers, author
  • Dr Rowan Williams, Former Archbishop of Canterbury
  • Edward Norton, actor and UN Goodwill Ambassador for Biodiversity
  • Fred Kempe, Atlantic Council
  • George Clooney
  • Glenys Kinnock, Baroness Kinnock of Holyhead
  • Guy Berryman, musician
  • Isla Fisher, actor
  • Jeff Smith, UK Member of Parliament
  • Jefferson Hack
  • Jo Cox, UK Member of Parliament
  • Joe Wright, director
  • Joel Kinnaman, actor
  • John Shattuck, Rector of the Central European University
  • Jonny Buckland, musician
  • Juliet Stevenson, actress
  • Justin Timberlake, entertainer
  • Karen Elson
  • Karl Ove Knausgård, author
  • Linn Ullman, novelist
  • Marjane Satrapi, director, writer and illustrator
  • Mark Rylance, actor
  • Michael Palin, actor, writer and traveller
  • Michael Williams, Chatham House
  • Michelle Yeoh, actor and UNDP Goodwill Ambassador
  • Miles Teller, actor
  • Padma Lakshmi, host and author
  • Pedro Almodóvar, film-maker
  • Philip S Khoury, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
  • Ridley Scott, director and producer
  • Rodrigo y Gabriela, musicians
  • Roger Godsiff, UK Member of Parliament
  • Sacha Baron Cohen, actor, comedian and screenwriter
  • Sofie Gabrol, actor,Susanne Bier, director
  • Susan Sarandon, actress and activist
  • Thandie Newton, actor
  • Vanessa Redgrave, actress
  • Wendy Chamberlin, Middle East Institute
  • Will Champion, musician
  • Zoe Saldana, actress