“When the earthquake started, the walls in my house began to shake and crack. I live in a small house with my nine children. We escaped to the street and stayed there until morning. Later, we heard that there was a shelter nearby, so we went there and stayed there until we knew what is going to happening.” –Mahmoud, Syrian earthquake survivor
“Please keep visiting us even if you can’t give us anything. The important thing is that you stay with us because we love you and we were happy that you came and checked on us.”Maryam, Syrian earthquake survivor
“I am Maryam. Today, I am 13 years old. Our lives have been difficult. I live with my mother and six siblings. My father died in the war…Today, I thank you because you came and distributed blankets to us. It’s very cold here, and we don’t have any blankets or warm clothes. Please keep visiting us even if you can’t give us anything. The important thing is that you stay with us because we love you and we were happy that you came and checked on us.” –Maryam, Syrian earthquake survivor
“I am here with my son. After the big earthquake, we ran away quickly. The building behind us collapsed completely. I didn’t know what will happen to us. They haven’t told us anything about our building, whether we can go back or when we can go back. This is the first time in two months that I have eaten chicken.” –Najwa, Syrian earthquake survivor
May 2023, and We’re Still in Syria
Three months ago, Syrians woke to an altered reality. Two pulverizing earthquakes crushed the region of Aleppo, destroying what 12 years of war hadn’t. Thousands of people lost their lives, and those the earthquake spared had to survive without food, water, or homes.
The immediate need was great: milk for babies and children, diapers and hygiene kits, medicine, food boxes, daily hot meals, fuel, mattresses, and quilted blankets to stave off the winter cold. You saw that need and responded, providing 500 food boxes with enough food for three weeks, 300 warm, thick, quilted, family-sized blankets to keep families safe and warm, and 2,000 hot meals to people with no means to cook. Twelve years of civil war has left many woman-led head-of-households, and you have helped 1,803 of them with your generosity.
In the next six months, homes will need to be fixed or rebuilt, and people will need tools to do so. Thanks to you, our community of peacebuilders will continue to do what they do best—taking care of immediate needs so people have one less worry. We’ll be providing more hot meals for those who have no way to cook, hygiene kits to restore a sense of dignity, and food boxes to support people through the month of May. We’ll be listening and leaning in, so come June and July, and for how long it takes, we can best uphold Syrian resilience as those in the Aleppo region rebuild their lives in the face of such obstacles. We couldn’t do this without you.
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