In honour of refugee week, World Vision has released a moving gallery of pictures taken in Iraq and Lebanon, giving a glimpse of how refugee mums around the world live their daily lives.
A spokeswoman from World Vision said: “Refugee Week is a week to recognise the strength and resilience refugees worldwide forced to be displaced from their homes because of conflicts and war.
“For many mums in the UK, life often revolves around the items of each day’s ‘to-do’ list: driving the kids to work, helping them with homework, getting them to bed.
“In some ways, the daily life for refugee mums is similar. They do many of the same things for their own families, except they are not doing it in a comfort of a flat or a house, but rather in a refugee camp, unfinished buildings or even inside a tiny garage,” she added.
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One mum, from Irag, said: “Our home’ doesn’t have a bathroom, so I pack my things and go outside to wait to shower. It’s not feasible to shower every day, and we often wear the same clothes we slept in. There’s little privacy. It makes me nervous, both for myself and my 11-year-old daughter, Marin.”
Marin says sharing is challenging. “When we take a shower, it’s crowded. People keep knocking at the door. I used to shower every day.” She now only takes a shower every two days,” she said.
Here, 118 families (700 people) live in a single-wide, bathroom-less trailers. Many do not have refrigerators. Everyone must cook outside. For 118 families, there are only sixteen bathrooms in total.
Johan Eldebo, World Vision UK’s Senior Humanitarian Policy Adviser said: “It’s time for Europe and the rest of the world to accept that we can’t wish the refugee challenge away. We must take collective action to address the root causes driving migration and ensure refugees are not marginalised, or left unproductive for years in camps.
“Children must be given education, communities should have access to healthcare and adults must have work opportunities. Such factors restore dignity and reduce reliance on expensive and unsustainable aid hand-outs,” he explained.