Syria: Aid and empowerment for refugees

Feedback: Aid and empowerment for refugees

The civil war in Syria has created a refugee crisis that has been catastrophic for the nation and its people. 13.5 million Syrians in total have been displaced, either within the country, or fleeing to other countries. It’s estimated that more than 11 million people in Syria are in need of assistance just to get by day to day.

Our partners in Syria work tirelessly to run programmes that create opportunities for internally displaced and vulnerable people from the host communities. In this, our second shipment to Syria, we sent clothing, medical supplies, furniture toys, and educational materials for displaced children who are missing out on vital years of playing and learning.

“[Because of the new donated school furniture,] the administration decided to get rid of 100 very old broken furniture, and could now open two new classrooms.

NGO staff.

The impact of the shipment included:

  • School furniture that enabled them to equip classrooms in three elementary schools in two rural villages.
  • Toys and warm clothing delivered to hundreds of children from displaced or impoverished families
  • Sleeping bags to help 750 displaced people in need. 

Thanks to generous donors, we included a large number of toys in the shipment. Some of the children who received toys have never touched a new toy in their lives. Coming as part of ongoing holistic work in education, counselling and healing for traumatised and struggling families, the joy that the toys brought was immeasurable.


Volunteers in Hong Kong load new toys into the container at Crossroads Village, ready to ship to Syria.


School furniture from the shipment replaced broken, very old desks and chairs in three different schools in rural areas.

 

 

 

 

 


New clothing for both children and adults meant struggling families were able to save money for other needs like food, health and transport costs.


Thousands of brand-new toys from the shipment brought joy to children in this rural, war-torn area who have never held a new toy in their lives. They have spent their entire childhoods displaced or living in a war zone.



 


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Abdul’s story

Abdul is a 42-year-old father of five and he lives with his family in the war zone where Crossroads’ shipment was distributed.

Abdul earns a small income from farming, but it’s barely enough to keep them alive. The family lives in tents made of old sheets and fabric. They get wet when it rains, they feel freezing in winter and boiling hot in summer. “The land around them is very muddy,” wrote Crossroads’ partners, when they visited Abdul. “They can’t take shelter from the winter and cold, because the tent fills with water and mud when it rains.. the sheets they made the tents from are torn and get damaged when strong wind blows. Because of their extreme poverty, they are forced to endure these difficult, harsh conditions.”

As a father, Abdul grieves that he can’t give his children even the basic necessities of life, let alone toys to play with or things they need for school. His adult sister lives with the family, too, and has disabilities that mean she should be using adult diapers and taking medication, but they can’t afford these things either.

Abdul and his family represent just one of many thousands of families living in destitution, thanks to Syria’s ongoing war.

After Crossroads’ shipment arrived, staff visited Abdul’s town with boxes of warm clothing, sleeping bags, toys and other goods from the shipment. “The area in which they live has never been reached by aid from any organisation or association,” said staff. “People felt cared for and loved. Their hearts were filled with gratitude and they shouted out their thanks!”

Abdul’s family were among those that received help, including brand new, warm sleeping bags. His children were given new toys, along with more than 6,000 other children in the rural areas they visited.

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