“Syria is my soul, my country, my life, my land and my past and present,” says Um Jamal. The 39-year old mother of four lost her only son after constant shelling stopped her getting him to her local hospital for treatment. She left Syria to ensure the safety of her four remaining daughters and now – with thousands of others - lives in the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan.
In her testimony, filmed for the UK’s Disasters Emergencies Committee, Um Jamal explains that leaving Syria was the hardest moment of her life. She’s grateful for the help ActionAid has provided with clothes, cleaning products and first aid courses to help her care for her family although she’s still desperate to return home.
Unfortunately that’s unlikely to happen any time soon. In the months since the refugee crisis came to international attention, the situation in Syria continues to deteriorate. Thousands of frightened and exhausted refugees are still pouring across the borders every day. As Um Jamal says, ActionAid is doing vital work in Zaatari camp. But our already scant resources are being stretched to the limit and we urgently need more support to scale up our response.