THE Government is holding an open day in High Wycombe about the Syrian crisis on Thursday.

Now in its fourth year, the Syrian crisis is the worst humanitarian disaster of modern times and in response the UK government has pledged £600 million in aid.

Hosted by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the open day will give people an opportunity to discuss what more can be done.

The day will run between 11am and 4pm on June 26 at The Hub, Easton Street, High Wycombe.

Here is an opinion piece about the crisis written by MP Alan Duncan, Minister of State for International Development.

"For more than three years the people of Syria have been bombed, shot at, starved and forced from their homes.

The terrible images we have seen on the front pages of the newspapers and from our TV screens can scarcely get across the horror and the scale of the suffering.

Some 2.8 million Syrians have fled their country of birth and become refugees. More than 9 million people are in desperate need of assistance.

The UK has a long, proud history of helping those in need and now we are doing everything possible to support the Syrian people. Our total funding for Syria and the region is now £600 million.

This is three times the size of our response to any other humanitarian crisis and it reflects the sheer number of people whose lives have been torn apart.

The response from individuals, charities and organisations across the country has been on a similar scale. More than 400 organisations and charities have come to Syria’s aid.

High Wycombe-based charities and local fundraising events have played a big part.

This support is the difference between life and death. Aid from the UK is helping to provide food for nearly 400,000 people inside Syria every month and clean water and sanitation for hundreds of thousands of refugees across the region.

We are supplying blankets and cooking sets and all the other basic things people need to survive and get by day to day.

I have visited the Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan and spoken to people who have endured unimaginable loss and suffering.

For parents the biggest worry is what this crisis is doing to their children. Children, who will one day be expected to rebuild Syria, have lost their homes, their schools and, in some cases, their families in this war.

We must not let these children become a generation lost to conflict. That is why the UK is providing basics such as text books, as well as child protection and trauma counselling.

Britain will continue to stand alongside the people of Syria and all those suffering as a result of this crisis.

As the conflict rages on, I want to hear more from people in High Wycombe about how we can ensure help reaches those who need it most.

I want us to work together, to ensure our help is directed as effectively as possible.

Britain remains on the side of all those Syrians who want to rebuild their lives, homes and country.

I hope the open day event in High Wycombe helps us understand how best we can do that."