UNICEF brings joy to children displaced from Afrin, Syria

Violence and displacement have depleted families’ financial resources, leaving them unable to provide for their children’s basic needs, including summer clothes to replace the heavy winter clothes they fled in.

UNICEF Syria
UNICEF/Syria 2018/Khudr Al-Issa

21 June 2018

For children across the Middle East and North Africa, Eid Al- Fitr is a time of festive family gatherings, new clothes, delicious sweets and gifts. But for thousands of children who have fled Afrin with nothing more than the clothes on their back, the usual cheerful spirit of Eid was nowhere to be found.

Between January and March 2018, violent fighting and attacks forced children and their families out of their homes in Afrin. Almost 134,000 people remain displaced in Tall Refaat sub-district, Nabul and Zahraa towns and surrounding communities, while 9,000 people have sought shelter in makeshift camps.

 

Violence and displacement have depleted families’ financial resources, leaving them unable to provide for their children’s basic needs, including summer clothes to replace the heavy winter clothes they fled in.

 

To alleviate some of the financial burden on families and help children reconnect with their childhood ahead of Eid, UNICEF distributed 35,000 summer clothing kits to displaced children aged 6 months to 14 years. Each kit contains a summer outfit, shoes, undergarments and a cap.

UNICEF/Syria 2018/Khudr Al-Issa
Children play in Al- Aser collective shelter, where UNICEF distributed summer clothes for children aged 6 months to 14 years. Established in April, the camp hosts around 300 families displaced from Afrin.
UNICEF/ Syria 2018/ Khudr Al- Issa
Daoud, 10, plays with his kite in Al- Aser shelter where he now lives with his family after fleeing their home in Afrin. Daoud and his brother Juan, 7, both received new summer clothes distributed by UNICEF just in time for Eid.
UNICEF/ Syria 2018/ Khudr Al- Issa
When 11-year-old Loreen was forced to flee her home with her family as violence escalated, she could not leave her passion for music behind. Loreen and her brother Ghandi, 6, are among 35,000 children who received summer clothes distributed by UNICEF.

We couldn’t bring any of our belongings, but I made sure to bring my violin. I could not leave without it.

11 year-old Loreen
UNICEF/Syria 2018/Khudr Al-Issa
Siblings Hamil, 12, and Beritan, 4, carry their newly received summer clothes distributed by UNICEF in Al- Aser camp for families who have fled violence in Afrin. Each kit contains a summer outfit, shoes, under- garments and a cap.
UNICEF/Syria 2018/Khudr Al-Issa
Brothers Adam, 10, Hasan, 6, and Mohammad, 4, were excited to celebrate Eid in new summer clothes distributed by UNICEF to children displaced by violence.
UNICEF/ Syria 2018/ Khudr Al- Issa
5- year-old Sylva was so happy to receive trousers and a t-shirt as part of her summer clothing kit from UNICEF in Al- Aser collective shelter. Sylva also received shoes, undergarments and a cap to protect her against the sun.

I don’t like dresses, I can’t play in them!

5 year-old Sylva
UNICEF/ Syria 2018/ Khudr Al- Issa
“Are there also some snacks and a toy inside?” asks 4-year-old Asmahan innocently while shaking the box of summer clothes she received from UNICEF in Al- Aser camp for families who have fled violence in Afrin.