Millions of families have been forced to abandon their homes after years of conflict and violence. In places like Yemen, Iraq, and Syria, people struggle to stay alive in their communities, until they have no other choice but to flee.
This month marks two anniversaries that no one is celebrating: Four years of conflict in Yemen and eight in Syria.
- An estimated 190,350 Yemenis have fled to neighboring countries
- More than 280,000 people are seeking refuge in Yemen
- An estimated 400,000 Syrians have been killed, according to the United Nations
- As of December 2016, 4.81 million Syrians have fled the country
- 6.3 million Syrians are displaced internally
- More than 10 million Syrians are exposed to the risk posed by explosive remnants of war
- 2.1 million Iraqis displaced inside the country
- More than 360,000 Iraqis displaced, living in unfinished and abandoned buildings
Humanity & Inclusion provides emergency care to people with disabilities and injuries living in Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq, and Yemen. Every day, our teams meet beneficiaries who share horrifying stories of bombs, torture, terror, and escape. But we take stock of their strength. Their survival. And together we set new goals. We celebrate new victories, however small.
Abdelkrim, 60, from Homs, Syria
"One day, while I was in front of the house, I saw planes in the sky. I thought I saw an unmanned aircraft in the middle of reconnaissance. Then it launched a missile that exploded in the street. Shrapnel came into my left leg." Abdelkrim bandaged his leg and when he finally made it to a doctor, he was told it had to be amputated due to infection. Today, Abdelkrim is recovering thanks to the rehabilitation care he receives from Humanity & Inclusion's team in Jordan. "I wish the war would end and that everyone could return in peace and security."
Warda's family, from Iraq
In February 2017, Warda and her family were caught in an explosion as they were fleeing Mosul, Iraq. After having both of her legs amputated, the young woman recovered in a hospital on the outskirts of the city, with her husband and daughter, who were also injured. Humanity & Inclusion's rehabilitation team provided Warda and her family with psychological support and physical therapy.
Yesser, 12, from Yemen
Yasser was doing homework next to his father when they were both struck by an explosion. Yasser lost his leg and his father did not survive. Today, Yasser receives rehabilitation care from Humanity & Inclusion's team in Yemen.
Wafa, 42, from Homs, Syria
"The planes attacked the city and sent bombs without any mercy to the families and innocent children who still lived there." In July 2012, three bombs fell on Wafa's house. During the attack, Wafa broke her left leg. "When I came out of the coma, my burns and my leg were terribly painful. But this pain was nothing compared to what I felt when I learned that four of my children had died. I could not protect them." Today, Wafa receives rehabilitation care from Humanity & Inclusion's team in Jordan.
Ali, 1, from Iraq
In April 2017, Ali and his family were used as human shields in Mosul, Iraq. Caught in a bombing, Ali was severely injured and his parents and brother were killed. The young boy receives rehabilitation care from Humanity & Inclusion's team in Iraq. Our team also provides his aunt and uncle, who are taking care of him, with advice on how to help Ali with physical therapy exercises.
Kamal, 15, from Dera'a, Syria
"I woke up with shards of glass all over my body and the bedroom door had collapsed on me. The air was dusty. My brother was trying to take me to my mother's room, but I could not hold onto both of my legs." The family manages, with difficulty, to bring Kamal to the nearest hospital: "My whole body was covered with blood. I was operated on briefly at first, then I had two operations to both my hand and my legs. I've never used weapons, and yet it was me that was bombed. I feel only sadness. When you do not feel safe in your own country, where can you be?" Today, Kamal receives rehabilitation support from Humanity & Inclusion in Jordan.
Ali, 20, from Syria
In 2013, Ali lost the use of his legs after being seriously injured in a bombing in Syria. The young Syrian refugee now lives with his family in a makeshift camp in the Beqaa Valley in Lebanon. Humanity & Inclusion's rehabilitation team has been helping him adapt to his disability through physical therapy.
Having spent years living in war zones and then as refugees in foreign countries, many Syrians with disabilities have gone without physical therapy, psychological support, and other vital medical care for long periods of time. Without proper care, disabilities and impairments become more severe and difficult to treat. That’s why Humanity & Inclusion continues to seek out Syrian refugees in countries like Lebanon and connect them with rehabilitation services.
The organization helps people like Bayan, 13, and her two brothers, who all have cerebral palsy. Her family fled the war in Syria two years ago and now live in the Beqaa Valley in Lebanon. HI covers the cost of the children's rehabilitation sessions. The family could not afford this sort of care before.
"Physical therapy is the most important thing for my children,” says Aisha, Bayan’s mother. “Without it, their condition will get worse and worse. This is the first time Bayan’s ever had this type of treatment. Unfortunately, because she didn’t receive treatment earlier, she’ll never walk again. But it might not be too late for her brothers.”
The whole team at the rehabilitation center is involved in caring for the three children and each is showing gradual signs of improvement. Bayan's mother and her children also receive mental health counseling. Aisha participates in self-help group to give mothers the chance to talk through the challenges they face every day.
Your tax-deductible gift will help Syrians with injuries or disabilities as well as those displaced by violent conflict. Humanity & Inclusion professionals are assisting Syrian refugees in Lebanon, Jordan, and Iraq. We are providing urgently needed emergency rehabilitation care, distributing walking aids, and supporting hospitals in the care of wounded civilians.
Please, join us in supporting the innocent victims of this devastating civil war. By making a gift now, you are giving them new hope for a better future.
Humanity & Inclusion is co-recipient of the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize for our work to ban landmines, the 1996 Nansen Prize for our work with refugees, and the 2011 Hilton Humanitarian Prize, the world’s largest humanitarian prize, for our work in Haiti after the earthquake.
*Any funds raised beyond the needs of our emergency response will be used to support other vital programs in the region and around the world.Donate
For Syrian refugees with disabilities in Lebanon, receiving mental health care in addition physical rehabilitation is vital to recovery. Since June 2017, Humanity & Inclusion has partnered with the Mousawat Rehabilitation Center in the Beqaa Valley to provide children with disabilities and their families with mental health care.
Children at the center have access to comprehensive rehabilitation services including physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and psychosocial support. Every week, the mental health and rehabilitation staff meet to discuss their patients’ cases and how they can provide a holistic treatment plan.
The center also offers parents psychological support, including a parental support group. At the start of the project, parents were reluctant to speak with psychologists, for fear of being stigmatized by their community. Today, it has become common for them to request these services.
Currently, about 300 children and their families are treated free of charge thanks to Humanity & Inclusion. The organization focuses mainly on early intervention and follow-up care with the parents. Many families are beginning to return to Syria, so it is important, for example, that parents learn the rehabilitation exercises needed for their child’s treatment so they can continue them in Syria.
Zyad was an athlete in Syria. Then war came and a bomb destroyed his right leg below the knee. Now, the father of three, a refugee in Irbid, Jordan, can barely stand.
The day we met him in Jordan, he couldn’t leave his home. On days like this, Zyad sits in the same position—any movement triggers unbearable pain. Simple, everyday tasks like washing dishes are extremely difficult. He can no longer walk and has to take taxis everywhere—a cost his family cannot bear after losing their home and land in Syria.
No work, no income
Without Zyad’s income, the family struggles to make ends meet. His wife balances caring for her family with work. She provides day-to-day care for Zyad as well as her youngest daughter, who has asthma and tissue damage to her hand from the bombing. The rest of the time she cleans schools to earn money. Her two older sons go from one menial job to another.
Support from HI
A few months ago, Humanity & Inclusion volunteers were visiting Zyad’s neighborhood to identify people with disabilities who needed support. The team was also surveying Syrian refugees in Jordan and Lebanon about the barriers they face in accessing humanitarian aid.
The registered Zyad with the local hospital, where a doctor first suspected that he might have still have bomb fragments in his knee. An x-ray showed a different culprit: arthritis. The cartilage of his knee joint is significantly degraded, causing him great pain.
The doctor prescribed physical therapy sessions—all free (even the transport to the sessions) thanks to donors. The therapy some relief, and he was able to walk on crutches. However, his condition is degenerative, and pain is never far from the surface.
Helping people with disabilities
Zyad has begun informing other people with disabilities about Humanity & Inclusion's work. Today, he’s the organization’s point of contact for identifying and registering people with disabilities in his neighborhood.
The study carried out by HI
A study, carried out by HI and iMMAP, found that one in five Syrian refugees has a disability, and much more needs to be done to connect refugees with disabilities to humanitarian services. You can read the full reports from Jordan and Lebanon.
Download the Report:
This report identifies indiscriminate bombing of civilians as the overriding factor forcing millions of Syrians to flee their homes. Based on interviews with Syrian refugees in July 2016, a document review, and expert interviews, the report identifies the large scale use of explosive weapons in populated areas as the most significant cause of the mass displacement of Syrians.Sign up
Download the Report
This report features in-depth interviews of more than 200 Syrian refugees in Lebanon who confirm and detail the devastating and lasting social and economic effects of the use of explosive weapons. Over half of the refugees interviewed were displaced within Syria before fleeing to Lebanon, experiencing consequences ranging from personal injury to the death of one of more family members, the destruction of homes, infrastructure and/or livelihoods. The report finds women are most vulnerable.Sign up
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Older, disabled, and injured Syrian refugees are being doubly victimized as a result of the Syria conflict, according to a new report by Humanity & Inclusion and HelpAge International. The new data show that these vulnerable individuals, as well as those suffering from chronic diseases, are being left in the shadows of the humanitarian responses.Sign up
Millions of civilians trapped in Idlib face the prospect of the greatest humanitarian catastrophe in Syria’s seven-year war, should there be a major military escalation in the country’s North West. Eight leading aid agencies are calling on world leaders meeting Friday to urgently work together to avoid this horrific scenario.
The presidents of Iran, Russia, and Turkey will meet in Tehran to discuss the situation in Syria, and later in the day a similar discussion will take place, in New York at the United Nations Security Council. In both meetings, participants, some of whom are actively involved in the conflict, must ensure they work together to uphold international humanitarian law and human rights, protect civilians, including aid workers, and civilian infrastructure, and allow unimpeded access to humanitarian agencies.
Aid agencies working in the governorate are already overwhelmed trying to provide shelter, food, water, schooling and healthcare across communities that have already doubled in size, having welcomed almost 1.5 million people displaced by the conflict. Many of those families arrived in Idlib having left areas previously retaken by Government forces, and with little more than the clothes on their back.
Once again, it will be the most vulnerable who will pay the heaviest price, with women, children, and the elderly in Idlib unlikely to be able to move to safety. Healthcare facilities, schools, water sources and other vital infrastructure in Idlib have already sustained heavy damage in this conflict, and pushed aid workers to work in difficult circumstances. Additional airstrikes and bombings will push already stretched resources to the brink.
In the event that aid organizations are forced to freeze their operations as a result of an offensive, vulnerable civilians will be left without vital humanitarian support. Meanwhile organizations operating from government-controlled areas currently lack access to Idlib and funding to meet the full range of humanitarian needs.
It is vital that world leaders take this opportunity to work together on a diplomatic solution that can protect civilians from a major increase in violence.
Danish Refugee Council (DRC)
Humanity & Inclusion
International Rescue Committee (IRC)
Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC)
Save the Children