Real lives

I Have Rights

Human Interest Stories




My name is Haneen and I am 15 years old. I was happy in my school but we had to leave my city because of trouble where we lived.  We became refugees in Baghdad. We saw some very dark days. I loved going to school but when we had to move to Baghdad I had to leave school and I saw my dream of becoming an engineer or a doctor disappear. My father died during these days and our difficult life became even more difficult; life became a nightmare. One week after my father had died one of my brothers decided that I wouldn’t be going to school anymore.  I wanted my mother to help me with this problem but my brother said that I have to stay at home and help with the house work because my mother could not do all the work by herself.


My God, what could I do? I didn’t want to stop going to school. I wanted to realize my dreams. But, my dear friends, there is always a solution. My mother was not happy with my leaving school. And because my mother was not able to convince my brother she went to my aunt Zainab. She was an engineer. A very respected person in our family and with a strong personality. My mother told her about what happened to me and my aunt came and talked to my brother. They talked for a very long time and she was able to convince him to let me go back to school.


I was praying all the time while my aunt was talking to my brother that she would be able to get me back my right to having an education. When I heard that my aunt was able to convince my brother to allow me to go back to school I was flying with joy and happiness. My dear friends I hope and wish that every child, boy and girl, can get their chance in finishing school because this is their future and it allows them to exercise their rights and make their wishes come true.


Around 750,000 Iraqi children are not enrolled in primary school today, including 400,000 in rural areas, denying them the right to education and making Iraq far from attaining the ‘World Fit For Children” and Millenium Development Goals of universal primary education.  Additionally, more than half of all primary school-aged children also do not complete school on time.



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