Iraq: emergency response in Syrian refugee camps

Published on Tuesday 26 January 2021

SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL teams have been involved in Iraqi Kurdistan for more than a year. Our actions aim to rehabilitate the water network in the Bardarash camp, where Syrian refugees are hosted.

Since October 2019, thousands of Syrians flee into Iraqi Kurdistan as the conflict worsens in North Eastern Syria. In order to facilitate the transit and registering of the new Syrian refugees, the Bardarash camp in Northern Iraq has been reopen – unfortunately, this camp was not equipped to enable access to drinking water and decent sanitary conditions. Several thousand of people would live without drinking water, exposing the makeshift shelters to waterborne diseases.

SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL teams have been deployed in the camp for more than a year to respond this situation. Since the opening of the mission, our teams assisted 12 000 refugees.

Thanks to the rehabilitation of drinking and wastewater infrastructures, more than 80 litres of water per day and per person are now available. SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL also offers job opportunities to the inhabitants to enable them to improve their living conditions. The income from the jobs also represents an opportunity for the refugees to meet their needs in food, water and care.

Sabah and his family arrived in November 2020 in the Bardarash camp. They fled their hometown, Hasska, Syria which has become the fighting ground for increasingly violent armed fighting. Without employment opportunity, the family – with three children out of six suffering from physical disabilities – could only take shelter under a makeshift tent. SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL rehabilitated their bathroom, building an access ramp for their three disabled children. They were then able to have decent and dignified hygiene conditions.

Employing Syrian refugees improves their living conditions on the long run. With an income, it is easier for them to meet their needs – especially their nutritional requirements. “The most precious and useful thing SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL gave me six months ago is a job”, says Jamil Othman. He is a beneficiary from the project and originates from Afrin, Syria.

  • 43.5 million inhabitants
  • 121st out of 191 countries on the Human Development Index
  • 27,749 helped people

In the camp, he is now a welder for SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL. In addition to the rehabilitation of the camp, our team enable the refugees to give meaning to their exile – by participating in the collective effort and improving their financial situation as well.

This job opportunity has also been beneficial for Hiba’s family. He is 13 and his father is ill. Thanks to his job with SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL, he is now able to pay for his father healthcare and to meet his family medical needs.

The result of SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL involvement are visible a year after the re-opening of the Bardarash camp. SOLIDARITÉS INTERNATIONAL constantly reaffirm our commitment to enable everyone to access decent life conditions and financial independence.

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Translated by Tifanny Oudin Dubois