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My husband and I fled to Lebanon eight months ago because of the war in Syria. I was heavily pregnant. My daughter Maya was born just a few days after we arrived.
My husband does whatever he can to earn money for us – painting, cleaning, taking any work that is available – but sometimes it is not enough.
Healthcare in Lebanon is very expensive, and without help from CAFOD’s partner Caritas Lebanon we couldn’t afford medicine for our baby. Caritas Lebanon have given us free medicine and consultations. I go to their health centre every month for vaccinations or whenever Maya is sick.
We hope Maya will do well in the future. We think she will create her own destiny.
And I hope we will all be able to go back home to Syria soon. Most of all I miss my family. My parents are still in Syria, and it’s been a year since I saw them.
Hama is one of more than 1.8 million Syrians who have fled the country to escape the war.
We are working with local partners in Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey to provide food, shelter, medical supplies, clothes, blankets and counselling to those most in need.
Please donate to our Syria Crisis appeal>>
Mariam Abdullah Adam had no milk to breastfeed her 45-day-old baby because “we have no food in the house,” she says. [Laura Sheahen/Caritas]
Nawal, 27, was a little confused when people showed up at her thatched hut one day, asking about her baby daughter. “They measured her arm to see how thick it was,” she remembers.
One thing wasn’t confusing: the family was hungry. “At home we don’t have any food,” she says simply. Though her husband earns some money as a daily labourer, there isn’t enough for the four children. “One of our little sons was in school, but he had to drop out. Our situation is bad.”
Help us respond to emergencies like the one in Darfur>>
Nawal’s situation has been bad for almost a decade, ever since the day her home village in Darfur was attacked. Shot in the leg and hiding under a tree, she thought she would die that day.
With thousands of others, Nawal escaped to one of Sudan’s camps for displaced people. They were safer there, but could no longer earn a living by farming. Some camp residents do tasks like brickmaking, making enough money to buy the day’s kilo or two of grain. But many mothers are prevented by illness, danger, or bad luck from earning enough to feed their families, and watch helplessly as their children grow thinner. Continue reading
Julienne and grandchild Emile (Credit: Camilla Storie)
Julienne featured in last month’s update – how her son had been arrested for illegal mining. In this blog, she tells us about her family, their health and also her daughter, Annonciata’s plans Please pray for Julienne’s health>> “My asthma makes it hard to cultivate the land particularly when it is colder, Asthma runs in our family, my aunt had it too, but I am pleased that Avega East is able to provide me with medication which helps me breathe more easily. Continue reading
Profulla reads his prescription
I have been suffering from a fever for two months. The doctors at St. Paul’s Mission Hospital and at the government hospital at Mongla advised me to do a blood test. I have done it, and now I am taking medicines that the doctors prescribed. I am very weak and cannot walk smoothly. The doctor told me that it will take time to recover. I cannot take food, and I feel like vomiting a lot of the time.
I cannot run my shop, and my wife Mamata is running it instead. One of my relatives is helping her to purchase goods from the wholesale market in Mongla.
My daughter is preparing for her Secondary School Examination, which will be next year. She has two private tutors, one for English and one for Mathematics. The road in front of my shop is very muddy because of the heavy rain we’ve had. We cannot walk around easily, and my daughter is staying at her uncle’s house nearby so she can walk to school more easily.
I request you all to remember me in your prayers, and pray for my recovery.
Tens of thousands of people have fled Syria to escape fighting. Now living in cramped, unsanitary conditions in neighbouring countries, some refugees are falling ill. We are helping our partner Caritas Lebanon scale up their response to the crisis.
Doctor Simon Kolanjian is a pediatrician who travels in a Caritas Lebanon mobile clinic to treat refugee children. He speaks about what he’s seen since the clinic on wheels started in May 2012.
How are Syrian refugee children doing?
The children are malnourished. They come to us and they’re weak and thin.
A lot of kids have diarrhoea. The water isn’t clean. I tell them to boil it. We need to tell them how to use water. The infections go up in summer. We can’t keep giving them antibiotics if the water’s bad. We must address the root cause.
There are also upper respiratory infections, lice, fungal infections. Continue reading