Walking for Days and Homeless

Syria-Iraq Disaster Relief

GHNI is helping families in Iraq who have fled the violence in Syria and Iraq.  Many have experienced the horror of seeing their families killed before them, people buried alive, and the loss of their homes and businesses. Many fled with whatever they had on their backs. Now they live in tents, abandoned buildings, and makeshift tarp structures, hoping to return to the land of their ancestors.

They need our help.

In the winter, they are cold all the time. They are searching for work, but there is none. Northern Iraq has a normal population of about two million. Today there are over one million displaced people there, additionally. The government is doing their best to help, but the situation is overwhelming. GHNI is helping fill the gap in our relief effort. We sought out an area where there was little or no assistance. In February, we did an assessment of several locations and determined our help could best be used near the town of Al Suluymaniya. There, we met local staff and formed a partnership with a local church to help these families.

Together, with you, we are making an impact on their lives. The needs are great. We will do our best to meet the physical need. We are also helping them emotionally.

Here is a story from our national staff to tell us about one of the families we recently helped:

The *Galley family is one of the Internally Displaced Person (IDP) families. Their father is *Zephiniah, and the family consists of nine people. They are one of the families who escaped from the town of Shangal (in the Nenava Valley, near Mosul) which was attacked on 8 November 2014. They spent some days of walking, until they reached the area under the Kurdish government (Peshmarga authority). They settled near to Suluymania City. Now, they are living in an abandoned, broken down factory with 15 other families.

“Our life was good at home, and now it is terrible, because we lost everything. Today we are living near starvation. We are cold and our living conditions are unhealthy. We want to return to our place.”

They expect to return to their home, but they don’t know when. Zephiniah said they now need many different things, such as food, baby milk, baby diapers, medical help, and school.

Mike Parks

GHNI Disaster Relief Coordinator

*For purposes of security and well-being, “Galley” and “Zephiniah” are pseudonyms of the persons being helped by this project.