Fatma is one of the people who fled the bombardment in Idlib and took refuge in the tent city in Dier Hassan. As her husband has been imprisoned for nine years, she was forced to migrate alone with her two children. She invited us to her tent. There are four families living in this small tent. There are a total of 17 people in the tent, 11 of which are children. The average age of the children here is five years old. The oldest among them is Fatma’s older son Hamza.
Fatma and her sons, Hamza and Sulaiman; Hamza is 9, Sulaiman is 8 years old.
As the tent is not protected from the cold, it is impossible to keep warm without a stove. Hamza and Sulaiman try to keep warm under these harsh conditions.
There are no men in the tent where they live. They were either imprisoned as in the case of Fatma’s husband, or were forced to flee due to the war. While sometimes women struggle to find fuel to burn in the tent, sometimes they rush their ill grandchild to the healthcare center. It is clear that they are exhausted from the deep lines on their faces. The grandmother tells us “Our tent leaks rain and it is overcrowded. As there is no electricity, at night we have to sit in the dark. We have a house in Idlib. If the bombing stops we will return, but we have no hope anymore. We are living in fear, we want a normal life.”
Four families-17 people, 11 of which are children live in this tent.
Despite all the hardships, there is happiness in the tent because Fatma is preparing to move to one of the living houses that we completed. When they heard the news, they were happy that at least one of the families would be living under better conditions. They finally have a home with two rooms, that doesn’t have a leaking roof and where the family can sit under the light at night and chat. Who knows, they may even host guests here.
As they left the tent on their way to their new home, I noticed that Fatma’s two sons were looking down at their feet as they were running. They loved the new boots we gave them. Maybe this was a run towards hope. Fatma will now wait for her husband in a safer environment.
The living houses where hundreds of families like Fatma have been settled.
Note: We have now completed the construction of more than 1.000 living houses for families who were forced to flee from Idlib. Our project is continuing with great speed. You can also build a warm home for these families by supporting our living house operations.