Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq

by RED International
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Relief for 1900 displaced families - Northern Iraq
Registering refugees to receive support*
Registering refugees to receive support*

Thanks to your support through GlobalGiving around 1,500 hygiene kits were distributed in August. Included is a brief picture of a request made to RED International's partner Operation Mercy (OPM) to cover a gap in distribution:

“Are you going to come back again, or was this just once?” Our staff had just finished a day of registration and distribution in Northern Iraq’s Domiz village, where the population is largely made up of Syrian refugees. People had waited in lines for hygiene kits in the sweltering heat as temperatures topped out over 100 degrees. “Yes, we’ll be back. Next time with food,” our staff replied. “Al humdullalah” (Praise God) was the response, coupled with a look of relief. In a continued response to the situation unfolding in Northern Iraq, OPM is distributing hygiene kits and food to six different locations in the region.  This includes food distribution to 514 Syrian Refugee families living in and around Domiz camp, which OPM is covering at the request of the World Food Program and Dohuk Governate’s Bureau of Refugee and Humanitarian Aid.

 To facilitate the distributions, OPM has partnered with Zalal Life (ZL), a local NGO. OPM has worked in cooperation in the past with them with the goal of increasing their capacity for larger projects. Distributing these hygiene and food packs to multiple locations is a test of that capacity, and ZL has risen well to the challenge. In Zalal Life Operation Mercy has found a group who sacrificially donate their time to get this stream of much-needed supplies into the hands of the refugee and internally displaced people (IDP) populations. Their hard work and care brings hope and encouragement as they serve those in need.

Thank you for enabling the team in Northern Iraq to support the refugees. Please continue to share this project with your friends and colleagues so this important work can continue.

*The images are from a previous food distribution project in another area.

Waiting for help in Domiz
Waiting for help in Domiz
Partnering with a local NGO
Partnering with a local NGO
Taking food packages home
Taking food packages home
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Father and Daughter receiving a food pack
Father and Daughter receiving a food pack

For the first part of 2016 our partner Operation Mercy has been supporting displaced families in the community of Var City by providing distributions of food and hygiene kits The last two distributions of the food packs in Var City were received by 1395 and 1505 households respectively.

 The latest information’s from the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) in Iraq shows that around 15,000 Syrian refugees and internally displaced people are living outside of camps in these informal settlements. Operation Mercy are now focusing on Syrian refugees and displaced Iraqis living in village communities in Dahuk Governorate.

They are starting with hygiene kit distribution in 6 small villages around the town Sharia. These villages are inhabited by around 1200 households, mostly Yezidi internally displaced families. They will then also distribute the hygiene kits to 300 households, mostly Syrian refugees, in Domiz Camp. This is a group of families selected by the UN to be most in need and among the poorest of the poor in this region.

We are very grateful to all those who have supported the relief work in Northern Iraq over the last year or so. Global Giving are offering an opportunity for donations to the Northern Iraq Relief Project to be match funded by 50% on Tuesday, 12th July .

All donations up to a maximum limit will be increased by 50% for as long as the matching funds last. There are separate campaigns being run by Global Giving in the UK and US.

Details on how and when to give are shown below. Please share this with your friends and wider networks. Rremember that donations will only be matched once the campaign has begun, so don't give before it starts or your donation will not be matched.

The matching funds are likely to be used up quite quickly so please also try to make your donation as soon as possible after the start times of the campaigns in the UK & US.

The matched funding campaign starts on Tuesday, 12th July at 2:00 pm BST in the UK and  9:00 am EDT in the US.

For Donors in the UK

Please use this link after 2pm BST on Tuesday 12th July to support the Northern Iraq Relief Project (donations can be gift aided) - www.globalgiving.co.uk/projects/relief-for-displaced-families-in-northern-iraq/

Click here for the UK Leader-board and a countdown to the campaign plus full terms and conditions

 

For Donors in the US

Please use this link after 9:00 am EDT on Tuesday, 12th July to support the Northern Iraq Relief Project - www.globalgiving.com/projects/relief-for-displaced-families-in-northern-iraq/

Click this link for the US Leader-board and a countdown to the campaign & full terms and conditions

 Summary Terms and Conditions 

 GlobalGiving UK

  • £10,000 in matching funds available
  • £800, £700 and £500 bonus prizes
  • Matching donations at 50% match, up to £1,000 per unique donor per project
  • Matching up to £5,000 per project (only one project per organization can take part)
  • UK eligible donors can add 25% Gift Aid
  • Leaderboard on GlobalGiving.co.uk
  • GlobalGiving.co.uk terms and conditions apply

 GlobalGiving US

  • $25,000 in matching funds available
  • $650, $500, and $350 bonus prizes
  • Matching donations at 50%, up to $1,000 per donor per project
  • Matching up to $10,000 per project (only one project per organization can take part)
  • US donors may receive a tax-deductible receipt
  • Leaderboard on GlobalGiving.org
  • GlobalGiving.org terms and conditions apply

The Syrian Refugee Relief Campaign Ends on Tuesday, August 16th at 2:00 pm BST (UK) and 9:00 am EDT (US) Donations given before this deadline will count toards the bonus prizes

 

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Families with Items from the Var City Distribution
Families with Items from the Var City Distribution

Located about 20 kilometres outside of Dohuk, Var City is currently home to around 6250 people and 1488 families. Of these families, 925 are Syrian refugee families and 563 are internally displaced Iraqi families from Mosul. Many of the Syrians fled Syria after the start of the civil war in March 2011. Others, like the internally displaced people from Mosul, fled from ISIS’s brutal invasion during the summer of 2014.

"Var City" means "future city" in Turkish and is not an official camp, but an apartment complex that is mainly rented by Syrian refugees and Iraqi Internally Displaced People (IDPs). Because it is not a formal camp setting, it has received little attention and assistance from the UN and the international community. Due to lack of funding, the World Food Program had to stop providing food rations in September 2015. This pressure to meet their basic needs is one of the factors which caused an estimated 200 Syrian Refugee families to attempt migration from Var City to Europe in search of hope. Our partner organization, HOME, is one of the few organizations continuously providing health services and English classes. Var City was chosen in part because our partner organization shares our long-term vision to see sustainable relief and development with a transformational impact through empowering, training, and mentoring relationships in the community.

An informal community assessment revealed that the lack of resources limits the ability of the families to purchase food and hygiene products. Community leaders confirmed these needs as the greatest priority. The main project components were the distribution of food packs and hygiene kits. The exact components of the kits were determined through a focus group that is a representation of the community in consultation with community leaders.

RED International’s partner, Operation Mercy conducted a total of 6 distributions (four food pack and two hygiene kit distributions) spread over 3 months. The specific items changed from distribution to distribution due to requests from the local community and due to working with different wholesalers. The number of food packs and hygiene kits distributed increased over time as more families moved to Var City and were registered.

The numbers of families receiving each distribution also varied as some of those who were registered did not come. But between 5000 - 6000 individuals were helped through each distribution representing 1100 - 1400 households or families with each receiving the different packs of items.

The local community was very pleased about the way the distribution was set up. One Syrian woman planned not to come to the distribution. She had been to other distributions and didn’t want to deal with the trouble, problems and fighting. Her neighbour came home from the distribution and told her that this distribution was different: “There’s no fighting. There’s order and organization.” She then went and was pleased with her experience.

Besides the staff of Operation Mercy, their partner HOME and other expat volunteers, more than 40 different people from the local community were hired for this project. They helped with unloading the trucks, packaging the food and hygiene items, and registering the beneficiaries.

Stories from Beneficiaries

Most of the residents of Var City complain about the costs of living expenses such as rent, generator power and food. Many try to find work as day labourers, but all the living expenses are a huge burden.

Bozan is from Qamishli, Syria, where he worked as a carpenter. He has two sons. His oldest son was in the Syrian army but they had to flee because of the war in 2012. When they arrived in Dohuk Governorate, they tried to get into a camp, but there was no space. Initially he kept trying to get into a camp but without result, so he gave up. One of his sons managed to get into one of the camps nearby and the other son lives with Bozan in Var City. He enjoys living in Var City, especially because many of his neighbours fled from the same village of Qamishli. The downside of living in Var City is the relatively high rent and other expenses. He uses his savings that he took with him from Syria to pay the expenses.

Idris also comes from Qamishli. He is married and has a one year old son. He had to leave everything when he left Syria in 2012: his house, his land and his work. His four brothers are living with him. His parents are still in Syria to guard their land. For more than three years he could not find work, but two months ago he found a job. He is currently working as a driver and has to provide for his family and brothers as his brothers can’t find work. Idris says: “Having no work is a huge burden. Life is hard with all the costs. Var City is a nice place to live, but we have to pay rent.” In the future he hopes to leave Iraq and live in Canada. The distribution of food and hygiene items help to supplement the food and hygiene allowance they use to sustain their family.

Fatima, a Syrian woman and a mother of six children, mentioned that in the time when they lived in Syria they weren’t rich but they always had enough. Nowadays it is a struggle to find income and provide for rent and other costs. She’s using every single item that is distributed and needs it desperately.

During their in-home evaluations many beneficiaries said that the Operation Mercy Food and Hygiene Project greatly supported the families of Var City, and they are grateful to Operation Mercy for showing them they are not forgotten or alone.

Operation Mercy in Northern Iraq are planning for Phase 2 of the Var City distribution project now that the Winter distributions are complete. We will be updating the project proposal shortly to reflect the new phase of the project.

We are very grateful for your partnership with us. Your support has helped make a significant difference in the lives of these families who have made Var City their temporary home in Northern Iraq.

Families at Distribution Centre in Var City
Families at Distribution Centre in Var City
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Registering with the local team
Registering with the local team

Operation Mercy’s team in Northern Iraq have completed two distributions in "Var City" since December 2015, one food distribution, and one hygiene kit distribution. The first two distributions were well organized and went fairly smoothly. In total they served around 1,150 households each distribution. The refugees and IDP's were encouraged and very thankful for the much needed provisions.

The first food distribution in December 2015 went well. The implementation of the project was through by Operation Mercy’s local partner HOME at their centre, with our oversight and advice. At least one staff member from Operation Mercy was always present during the distribution.

In order to serve the local community better, every household was asked around 25 questions during registration. The whole process of registration and food pack distribution took three days.

Number of staff involved:

  • 14 local staff
  • The leaders of the community, called mukhtars, were involved by checking every beneficiary whether they actually live in Var City: this team consisted of 7 men and women
  • 25 expat volunteers including HOME and OPM staff.

In total the team served around 1130 households. Around 90-100 people did not have the right paper work, so the number of households will likely increase with the next distribution.

The distribution of the hygiene kits took place on 13th of January 2016.

The team distributed hygiene kits to 1110 households. The distribution went fairly smoothly again. The number of staff used was 10 locals all day and 17 expat volunteers that worked in shifts.

The next food distribution was due to take place on Thursday 4th February. They have registered 100 new households since the last distribution.

Thanks again to everyone who has supported this project and especially to those who gave generous donations at the end of 2015. The team on the ground are grateful to the resources they need to deliver these food and hygiene supplies. Although they have sufficient funds for the current distributions there is still a shortfall which needs to be met if they are going to complete all 6 distributions to these families. Our partners are already looking beyond the final set of distributions to determine what the next phase of this project should look like.

Thanks again for your partnership with us. Please continue to share this project with your friends and colleagues.

Receiving a Food Pack
Receiving a Food Pack
Food Pack Example
Food Pack Example
Hygiene pack example
Hygiene pack example
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Meeting with representatives of local community
Meeting with representatives of local community

Following the regular distribution of nutritious fruit and vegetables to 701 families in Bozan earlier in 2015 Our partner, Operation Mercy is now focusing on supporting the needs of at least 1000 families in a village community in Northern Iraq.

Located about 20 kilometres outside of Dohuk, Var City is currently home to well over 5,000 people in more than 1,000 families. Community leaders had estimated that, 690 were Syrian refugee families and 370 were internally displaced Iraqi families from Mosel. Many of the Syrians have fled Syria after the start of the civil war in March 2011. Others, like the internally displaced people from Mosel fled from ISIS’s brutal invasion during the summer of 2014.

"Var City" means "future city" in Turkish and is not an official camp, but an apartment complex that is mainly rented by Syrian refugees and Iraqi IDPs. Because it is not a formal camp setting, it has received little attention and assistance from the UN and the international community. Due to lack of funding, the World Food Program had to stop providing food rations in September 2015. This pressure to meet their basic needs is one of the factors which have caused an estimated 200 Syrian Refugee families to attempt migration from Var City to Europe in search of hope. Our partner organization in the settlement, HOME is one of the few organizations continuously providing services such as English- as well as Health and Wellness Classes. Var City was chosen in part because our partner organization shares our long-term vision to see sustainable relief and development with a transformational impact through empowering, training, and mentoring relationships in the community.

Operation Mercy has already conducted a gymnastics camp in Var City this fall to help relieve some of the stress of the children, while also encouraging them to enrol in the school that is run by another partner aid organization working with Save the Children. Operation Mercy has also launched a women’s fitness program with HOME and wants to continue supporting the needs and investing in relationships in Var City. The food & hygiene kit distribution will supplement the existing educational and medical programs while meeting some of the strongest felt needs.

An informal community assessment revealed that the lack of resources limits the ability of the families to purchase food and hygiene products. Community leaders confirmed these needs as the greatest priority, especially as the World Food Program was forced to stop providing food. A medical clinic which has treated over five hundred patients from Var City also confirmed the need for hygiene kits. They will help prevent the spread of disease along with the medical education courses run by HOME.

The lack of physical provision has contributed towards feelings of hopelessness and a desperation which has driven the dangerous migration of about 200 Syrian refugee families from Var City to Europe.

Project Description:
The main project components are the distribution of hygiene kits and food packs. The exact components of the kits will be determined through a focus group that is a representation of the community in consultation with community leaders. This focus group will meet several times: first to determine which specific items should be included in the both the hygiene kits and food packs and then to evaluate if any changes need to be made to the contents of the distributions or how the distributions are run. Operation Mercy will conduct three food and hygiene kit distributions each on different weeks, making a total of 6 distributions. Pending approval from internal security forces the first distribution will start in December, and then alternating between food and hygiene kits every two weeks for the duration of the 12 week project.

Our partner has now received an updated list of 1210 families from local community leaders. This includes 740 Syrian Refugee families and 470 Iraqi IDP Families . They will purchase enough food supplies for 1250 families for their first distribution to ensure that no one is left out. A more complete assessment will be completed during the first distribution. That will give a more accurate number of families for the next round of distributions

Further Support for the Project
We have just received the very encouraging news of a grant awarded from the Global Giving Syrian Refugee Relief Fund for the relief work in Northern Iraq which will be enough to support one of the monthly food pack distributions to at least 1000 families. This complements the grant already received in October from the Isle of Man Government's International Development Committee for this project.

We are also very grateful to everyone who has been supporting this project individually, especially in the last few weeks and we have been very encouraged by the generous support we have seen for this project from a growing number of people. As Northern Iraq faces winter the need is still very urgent to support families in these communities and provide them with items which will help them to remain in the region.

Thank you again for your generous support, please continue to share this project with your friends and colleagues.

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Organization Information

RED International

Location: Oswestry, Shropshire - United Kingdom
Website:
RED International
Andrew Sinclair
Project Leader:
Andrew Sinclair
Oswestry, Shropshire United Kingdom

Funded Project!

Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.
   

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