The situation in Kurdistan is not as good as it should be thinking of all the international organizations and local churches providing relief. The main problem according to the NGO Coordination Committee for Iraq (NCCI) and our partners is that international funding is not being distributed properly with most of the effort being directed toward Erbil and Duhok. Since the beginning of 2014 there are more than 1.7 Million Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Iraq dispersed around 1,700 locations, but most international funds started to flow to Iraq after August 2014 supporting probably 43% of the displaced population. With that being said, I am finding so many communities that are forgotten or lack funds to survive.
The UN is fully active still in Erbil, Duhok and other areas where they are needed and they provide for basic needs on a certain schedule. What I realized is that in big international foundations there is so much hierarchy and rules that need to be followed and they almost always treat people like subjects. This is not wrong and they are doing a brilliant job most of the time, the problem is they forget that these people are humans. When I am dealing with the IDPs, I imagine myself as one and I imagine what would I need if I was living here or there. I go around in visits to the camps and talk to the people, to see their personal needs and try my best to provide them with things they need most.
For September FRRME provided for more than 7,107 families, with at least 8 members of each family. We provided food regularly for about 2,000 IDPs, water for more than 3,500 IDPs, and chicken and rice for about 2,500 IDPs. We provide for four villages, around Nineveh plane and in Duhok through our local partners. About $28,000 went to local and international organizations providing medical and humanitarian relief for the IDPs, $14,860 was allocated for the IDPs that got re-displaced from Erbil to Baghdad, $25,000 was provided for small active Church communities that we support fully, and $15,537 on food relief for all the camps. These amounts of money are serving people directly with exactly what they need.
In my last visit at the end of the month I tried to find more communities that FRRME can support that the International funding is not reaching. I found an amazing Monastery for the Carmelite Society that is taking care of more than 1,400 Yazidi families in Duhok. I went and I met with them, and they appeared really in need of funds. FRRME is trying to get more people involved for a sustainable relief effort reaching out to all of the communities. Most funding comes to the North from the Emergency Fund which will run out in three months. So many organizations are already starting to worry about next year’s funding since the situation does not seem to get any better.
As our supporters you may know that Canon White will not be able to go back to Iraq for now because of the increasing threat of Daash named ISIS. Andrew felt that he need not only to protect himself but protect the people that he cares about. He didn’t want to endanger any of the people who work with him or the people he loves in Saint George’s where he stays. Andrew is continuing his work in Israel/Palestine of reconciliation, we all should join in prayer for him to continue his great work. Meanwhile, the mission in Iraq continues with Andrew’s blessing.
This story came to my mind as a finishing to my report to all of you our supporters; I was leaving one of the camps in Ankawa, Erbil and I looked over the fence and I saw two beautiful kids playing around, sister and brother. They smiled at me and I did to them. They were waiting for me to say something, so I told them that I have a gift for you. I went and I got them something, their Father who was watching said, “You made their day.” I replied, “Nope, they made mine.”
FRRME is doing a great relief program through you our supporters, so I really want to thank you for the great contributions you have made. Please keep us in your prayers and keep sharing this information to let people and the world know what is happening.
Peace and Love,
Dr. Sarah AK Ahmed