Helping ends meet for Syrian refugees in Jordan


Mother-of-six Maya had to leave behind her a life of sunset strolling in the park with her husband and evening meals with the family for a damp house in a refugee camp in Jordan. In winter, water comes through the leaky ceiling, and in summer it’s stiflingly hot.

Before coming to Jordan, Maya and her husband moved their whole family by motorbike from village to village, trying to stay ahead of the bombings. But one day, the village they were staying in was completely destroyed. They knew they had no choice but to join the thousands of others who’d crossed the border in search of safety.

Crowded into the back of a truck, the family choked on dust and dirt as the drivers drove a convoluted route through the desert to avoid military attack. Once inside Jordan, they were bussed from place to place, sleeping in tents and never staying long in one location.

Now the family ekes out a living on what little work Elias, Maya’s husband, can pick up. Act for Peace’s partner in Jordan helps Maya’s family with health checks, as well as food supplies to help to feed their six children, but life is still very hard. “Everything is so expensive here,” says Maya. “We make the food last by making the dishes smaller.”

As well as health support and ration packs, Act for Peace’s partner provides psychosocial support for people who have been traumatised by their experiences, and help with schooling and training to enable them to complete their education and find work.

Most of the work is done by volunteers, mainly refugees themselves. This saves money and ensures aid reaches the people who need it most, as well as giving refugees the power to help their own communities.

 “We hope for Syria to be stable and secure again. We want to go back to Syria again and live in security and stability with our family. Our home town is very precious to us and we just want our home again. A big thank you to the Australian people,” says Maya.

Key fact:
More than half the population of Syria has become refugees or been internally displaced since the conflict began 5 years ago.

The difference your gifts to the Christmas Bowl are making:
 Act for Peace’s partner DSPR, Department of Service to Palestinian Refugees, has been working on the ground for 65 years.  Their local staff is part of the community, speak the language and are extremely well trusted. Thanks to your gifts to the Christmas Bowl, our local partner in Jordan can support Syrian refugees by providing food rations, healthcare, hygiene and sanitation, psychological support, livelihoods program and education.

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$65 this gift will help provide warm clothing for children who were forced to flee the war in Syria with nothing but the clothes on their backs.

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$20 will provide a refugee with emergency food rations for an entire month. Each food parcel contains rice, flour, oil, tuna, beans and other basic food items.

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