ZINA'S TINIEST SURVIVORS
Born to a Syrian refugee family in Lebanon, these 10-day-old triplets who lost their mother during childbirth, are this winter storm's bravest survivors
Riad, Khaled and Ahmed were born 10 days ago in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley. Their father and mother have been living as refugees from Syria for the last three years in Dalhamieh, where hundreds of refugee families have settled in informal tented communities. On the day of their birth their mother was rushed to hospital but sadly did not survive birth.
Access to health services for Syrian refugees in Lebanon, where services are largely privatised, is one of the major challenges to these families and to the humanitarian aid agencies trying to help them with this access. As the triplets were generally in good health they were discharged from the hospital and the recently bereaved small family went back to their tented settlement in Bekaa Valley just as this winter’s storm hit hardest.
This is where UNICEF and its partner Beyond Association stepped in to ensure these precious bundles of hope survive the harsh winter. The triplets and their father are now living with a relative and Beyond’s medical team is ensuring daily visits from a doctor to make sure they are doing well, a heater has been installed and fuel is provided regularly as well to keep the tent warm and dry and, of course, lots of blankets and covers. The three of them are a little bit under-weight and this is something the doctor is keeping an eye on, milk is being provided to the family through Beyond’s team.
At the moment the three of them are doing reasonably well; Khaled is the one doing more poorly of the three, but they are stable considering how much these little fighters are going through having been only 10 days with us.
The worst of Zina is past us, but the temperatures will continue to be below freezing over the coming few nights. So as you pull your blanket a little bit closer to keep the night cold away send a warm thought to Khaled, Riad and Ahmed. We at UNICEF with Beyond and all our partners will continue to do all we can to help these triplets and hundreds of thousands around Lebanon get through the worst of this winter.