Adana refugee camp – January 2022

In January I finally joined another expedition of Support and Sustain Children to the refugee camp after my birth day fundraiser and that way my expenses were fully covered by generous donations. The remaining part of the sum went into the "cash box" for blankets, food, school material, stoves, etc -read on for more details.

Here below is an extract from the expedition report of SSCh president Arianna Martini:

"When I write about the mission, it always seems that I'm saying the same things.
And, broadly speaking, it's true. But emotions are experienced. Fatigue, joy, hope and despair, those are things that always have a different face and weight.
Each mission is different for the people we meet, for the unexpected events we face, for the cold or the heat. For fatigue. Because we leave home full of hope and return with empty hands, even if you know you have done everything you set out to do.
The usual long plane ride, the usual little or no sleep every night. And eat little and badly.
We stayed at the camp for three days, then we drove for three hours to move to the northern urban area, and after two days we returned to the camp for another day.
In the first three days we dedicated ourselves to the distribution of food parcels for the almost 900 families of the camp, to the long distribution of supports to orphans, to purchase the stoves for the two Rainbow Tents and to deliver the teaching materials brought from Italy, to buy jackets and clothes for the most fragile nuclei.
We spent a lot of time in the Rainbow Tents, where children can really breathe a little peace and learn to read, write, a little about history, geography but above all hope for a future different from the slavery of ignorance.
In addition to books, notebooks and educational material, we brought two PCs and on the last day we also bought two monitors so that they can follow educational programs online and, why not, some cartoons.
Our teachers are doing an immense work, in a very difficult and precarious situation.
When we moved to the urban area we did it to open a small school of 40 pupils. And we stayed for two days, also to meet a local association with which to discuss possible future projects.
It is a really humble and simple school, with only one teacher and a lot of good will. The children who attend it are better cared for and live in a better context than the children in the camp, but they are still isolated and often rejected by official schools.
It was cold, it was really cold and it even snowed.
We tried to get everywhere and as much as possible."

Here are some portraits I took around the refugee camp. Some of these children were born there and that's the world as they know it.

For some they are collateral damage. For others a political or economical opportunity. But they are people, flesh, soul, feelings, dreams. And hope.

Now history is repeating itself, close to our European homes and the danger of a "nuclear pandemic" is ever so real. It's important not to forget about refugees and their tragedy, no matter where they come from.

The rhetoric of the global leaders and their media vassals tends to trivialize -sometimes even romanticize- the events into the usual struggle of "good vs evil".

Whether economic, medieval or high-tech, the war machine is very active all over the globe and people are dying, pushed into poverty, families are displaced because of it, on "both sides".

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