Our team isn’t just dedicated to providing emergency relief to cases of extreme poverty. We also do what we can to meet the needs of Yezidis facing a desperate struggle for survival, by contributing to sustainable ways for them to make a living.
One of our first projects involved a very large family of 40. It was a particularly tragic story; there were around 20 children, all under 16, and 20 women, many of them elderly. Nearly all their fathers, brothers and husbands had been murdered by ISIS in August 2014 and almost all the younger women were captured as slaves. There was nobody in this family unit able to earn a living. The family were surviving on handouts from neighbours and living in an unfinished room with a tent extension.
We set about fundraising to pay for some chickens, so they could breed them and have eggs to eat and sell. In the end we managed to raise enough money for 33 good laying hens and a fine white rooster.
We tried to persuade them to also keep goats but they were not at all keen. Instead they asked for three sewing machines with material and accessories. This we were able to achieve thanks to our kind donors.
We’ve continued to stay in touch and visit this family, as we try to do with all those in need who come to our attention. We take them shopping, pass on donations and, if they wish, help them with resettlement programs abroad.
Since we first met, more women from this family have escaped ISIS survival and remain in the camp, traumatised and with little support.
It’s so sad to see such devastation and tragedy on this scale with little hope for a secure future. We hope people will continue to support them and other families so tragically torn apart by ISIS.
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