Haneen, 14, Ayat, 12,  Zahra, 8

“My father used to have a fruit and vegetable stand. That’s how he provided for us. But one day he went to the doctor and found out that he had diabetes. The doctor prescribed him medication so that he could get better. But my father couldn’t afford the medication. So, his condition kept getting worse and worse until he passed away five years ago.

“He used to make about twenty dollars a day. And that was enough for us to survive. We have always lived in this mud house. We never needed anything. After my father died, my mother started baking bread and selling it to make a living. She also started cleaning houses so she could feed us. She used to make ten dollars a day, but we were okay. But four months ago, she got really sick and had to quit her job. Now we have nothing,” Ayat said.

“Two months ago, my mother had to give my older sister (Haneen) away to some relatives because she couldn’t afford to provide for her. Now she lives in the city of Basra, about 300 miles away from here.

My mother says that she has tried to forget about her, but she feels really guilty. I cry every day, because I miss her so much. We don’t know if she is okay, if she’s happy, or if she is doing well. We can’t call her because we can’t afford to buy phone credit,” Ayat added.

“My younger sister, Zahra, is really sick. She has a skin condition. The illness is eating up her skin. We can’t take her to the doctor to get treated, because we don’t have the financial means,” Ayat said.

Zahra started crying and said, “I want to treat myself. I want to get better. I want to play with my friends outside. But I can’t because I’m in so much pain all the time. And if I move around too much, I start to bleed.

“I miss my oldest sister so much. I wish my mother didn’t have to give her away. But my mother can’t even provide for us. I want to go and see her but we just can’t.”



The above represents one of many orphan stories by victims in war-torn regions. Your support can make a difference for orphans like Haneen and her siblings. Make a contribution today by clicking here.