James Astleford, Executive Director of ADRA Canada, reflects on his visit to the ADRA Canada project in Iraq.
In the summer of 2014 we watched horrific news reports of Iraqi families being forced from their homes because of the aggression of ISIS fighters. About a half a million people, most of who were of ethnic and religious minorities including many Christians, had to flee to safer parts of the country. While this story may no longer be as prominent in our evening news, the people who had to flee are still displaced with no real hope of returning home any time soon.
Most of the people ran to the relative safety to the Kurdistan region of Iraq, most often with nothing more than what they are able to carry. Not only did they lose their homes, businesses, and careers, most have not been able to find employment in their host cities. With no way to make an income, most of the displaced families have struggled to survive. As winter set in, summer clothes and simple shelters were not enough to keep out the cold.
Thanks to grants from the Canadian government and the generous support of our donors, ADRA Canada has been able to respond to these people in such great need.