In 2014 Northern Iraq was left devasted by the rise of Islamic State. Towns and cities were laid waste and thousands fled. Today, these same refugees are returning home with the hope of rebuilding their livelihoods and their futures.

In 2014 All Saints supported the work of Medair as it attempted to support refugees fleeing Iraq. This year we are supporting Medair as it seeks to help support these same families as they return.

Matra stayed as long as she could in her family’s home village until her husband disappeared. She fled with her four children to a camp for displaced people. When she finally returned to her village, it wasn’t how she remembered it – everything was destroyed – but she was determined to make a life for her and her daughters in their home village once again. Through Medair, Matra has bought a cow. “The cow was pregnant and now we have a second one. Currently, half of the milk is used to feed my children and the other half is for the baby cow. Once it grows older, we can sell the extra milk for income. Now I can feed my children yoghurt and milk every day. I’m able to provide for them. “During the crisis, we lost hope. But now, I have hope again that a better life is to come.”

Returning home seemed like a far-off dream. But now it is a reality. As parts of Iraq become safe to return to, many families, like Matra’s, are now trying to rebuild their lives after crisis. But years of conflict has severely damaged or destroyed homes, schools, medical centres, and other vital services. They need continued support to recover.

Medair is supporting and strengthening the local medical centres, supplying families with essential household and hygiene items, and providing much-needed psychosocial support to people both returning home and still displaced. You can stand with families in Iraq and help them recover after the crisis. Your generous support this season will bring hope to families and give them the strength to make a fresh start.

© 2015 All Saints Vevey
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