A consequence of war and displacement: Lack of safe and dignified shelters

The most difficult thing is to flee from your home and your country, because after that you will be like a body without a soul.” 

With this touching sentence, Ahmed began telling us about the journey of displacement that he has lived since the beginning of the war in Syria. Ahmed was forced to flee his home in Syria along with his children and relatives, facing immense challenges and hardships in search of safety and stability. At 73 years old, living in unsafe and uninhabitable houses, and the instability of having consistent housing for him and his family, was taking a mental and physical toll.

We visited Ahmed and his family, who after being displaced time and time again due to the war, were living in an unfinished house that lacked even the most basic necessities of life, such as windows, doors, and proper utilities.  They qualified to participate in our Individual Shelter Rehabilitation Project, which ensures that shelters protect from harsh weather conditions and provide adequate privacy and the basic necessities of a dignified shelter.

In close partnership with the family, we were able to install PVC doors and windows, upgraded the utilities, covered the floors, and made the site weather-resistant. In addition, we installed a sink, a 2,000-liter water tank, and a bathroom. We installed a sturdy main iron door for added security. In order to accommodate Ahmed's large family, we constructed an additional full room. We worked with the owner of the property to ensure that Ahmed and his family could live in the property for at least the next two years. 

Before and After

Upon the completion of the work, Ahmed told us, "I am at a loss for words to thank you...The improvements to our home have been nothing short of miraculous. We can go out and close the door instead of the blanket we were using."  The transformation has allowed Ahmed and his family to live with increased dignity and security, restoring a sense of stability that had been lost since the onset of the war. Ahmed told us, "this thing made us feel stable".

Ahmed and his family's constant struggle to find a safe and dignified home is unfortunately, the same story for millions of Syrians who have been forced to flee their homes in search of safety. After families make the difficult decision to flee their livelihoods and homes, finding adequate shelter is a daunting challenge. In northwest Syria, overcrowded camps, makeshift tents, and dilapidated buildings are often the only options available, with limited access to clean water and sanitation facilities. The harsh living conditions exacerbate the vulnerability of displaced persons, who are often vulnerable to disease outbreaks and exploitation. 

Simple updates to houses like Ahmed's would make huge improvements to a family's health, quality of life, and sense of security. Would you partner with us and support our Shelter Team to support more families like Ahmed?

Provide safe and dignified shelters.

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