Through our partnerships with the Syrian Orthodox and Armenian churches, we are feeding 5,500 Christian families every month in Northern Iraq (approximately 33,000 people). We also provide food and water to tens of thousands of Internally Displaced Persons (mainly Sunni Arabs) across 17 displacement camps, including hot food for 7,000 people twice a day in Debaga Camp in Makhmour (the largest camp in the region). We are one of the few humanitarian agencies to provide aid to Khazir Camp on the outskirts of Mosul, Islamic State’s de facto capital in Iraq.
The Um al Noor Kindergarten:
The Kindergarten is run by the Syrian Orthodox Church and is based in a large villa in Erbil, the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan. It caters for around 130 Christian children, mainly from the camps and from the congregation in Erbil. The children only pay if they can and we continue to contribute £4,000 ($5,000) for each school year.
The eight teachers at Um al Noor are led by Mrs Amira Aqrawi who is herself is an IDP from the recently liberated eastern part of Mosul. Mrs Aqrawi says she is reluctant to go back there given the terrible persecution suffered by Christians in the city under Islamic State.
Girls school in Harsham camp:
There are currently 30 girls enrolled at our girls school in Harsham Camp north of Erbil, but this could go up to 60. The four cabins that make up the school are self-contained and transportable. The curriculum is certified by the Iraqi Ministry of Education. Currently, the Emirates Red Crescent is responsible for a majority of the housing units at Harsham, while we are providing regular food deliveries for the girls and the staff.
Autism centre in Kirkuk: