• Najla from Somalia

    Najla was abandoned on the roadside by her biological mother when she was three days old. She was rescued by a well-wisher who took her in and gave her a home for four months. The family was struggling to take care of Najla as they didn’t have any stable source of income. That is when she was identified by SOS Children’s Village Mogadishu as a child in need.

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  • Gilbert and Violette from Burundi

    Gilbert Nizigiyimana was eight years old when he witnessed the murder of his parents and four siblings at the hands of their own relatives. Only Gilbert managed escaping through a window. All alone, he fled to a refugee camp in the northwest of Kenya. His Wife Violette was also forced to flee from Burundi. “I hope that someday our baby will be better off than we are now.”

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  • Anyer from South Sudan

    Anyer Bulen Dit (46) is from Bor, a small community north of the South Sudanese capital Juba. When the civil war erupted towards the end of 2013 and the battles kept coming closer, they fled from their homes, just like nearly 3.5 million other people in South Sudan. “I fled in January, when the fighting began, from Bor to Mingkaman. Because of the fights, I had to leave all our possessions, our cows, just everything behind and flee with my husband and our children. Many of our relatives stayed behind and were probably killed – we’re not exactly sure.”

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  • Fatimé from Chad

    Fatimé Malicky (49) is one of more than 95,000 people who fled from the Central African Republic to Chad, the neighboring country in the north. “It started at three in the morning. We heard the firing, heavy artillery and shooting. In our neighborhood, 55 people were killed with machetes, pregnant women were cut open and their unborn children were hacked to pieces. All around us there was nothing but death. So you take your children and run.

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  • Viola from Democratic Republic of Congo

    “As refugees, we didn’t have to pay anything for our treatment, and I am so grateful for that, because I wouldn’t have even known what to do otherwise. We don’t have any money for a doctor”, Viola Roba says in a low voice. Thirty-year-old Viola Roba found a bed in a church. Along with her two children, she fled from South Sudan to the Democratic Republic of Congo to bring herself and her children to safety. Her husband didn’t make it.

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  • Mohammed from Yemen

    In rural parts of Yemen, most people often hike for hours, under difficult conditions and along unpaved desert roads just to find clean drinking water. Even if they are lucky enough to find a well, the water is most likely contaminated with dirt or mud. “We couldn’t use the well, and that made me, my wife and my daughter suffer greatly. We had to cover great distances just to get water, and we couldn’t even wash ourselves at home”, says Mohammed Salem, who lives in Alfishlah, a village in the province of Abyan without any latrines.

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  • Jestina from Simbabwe

    “I’m not happy with my situation, but I don’t have any other choice”, Jestina Pellu says through a smile while both hands rest on her round belly. “A few oxen would be nice, so that I could plow my field”, she adds humbly. Jestina is 38 years old and six months pregnant with her fourth child, whom she has to care for on her own.

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  • Katu from Pakistan

    Each day, it is a new challenge for the villagers of Koli Para to find clean, drinkable water. Sixty-year-old Katu and other women collect water for daily use from a small reservoir fed from surrounding watering canals. However, livestock drink here as well, so the water isn’t necessarily still suitable to drink. “We have no other choice but to drink this water”, Katu says. “That’s why we have health issues; not only the children regularly suffer from diarrhea, scabies and typhoid. When we get sick, we can’t work in the fields and have to spend a large part of our money for treatment.”

     

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  • Luis Sinistera from Colombia

    Luis Sinistera lives with his family and his four children in a small community by the canal. “We live from fishing and from coconuts we turn into oil. We actually also tend to several fields a bit further up, but the path there is dangerous. We’ve already had to leave our village twice because armed groups were battling right in front of our doorstep. The conflict is damaging our local community. I hope someday peace really does reach us as well.”

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  • Foto: © Verena Hölzl

    Lu Lu Awng from Myamar

    Everything began when Burmese soldiers opened fire on Lu Lu Awng and her family. It happened at three in the morning, the twelve-year-old girl remembers well. She is sitting on her pink blanket with her hands folded on her lap. Colorful animals decorate the pajama pants she is wearing. There is a little pink chest in front of her bed in which she keeps her belongings. On a stool near the top of her bed there is a pile of schoolbooks, which she has carefully stacked there. It has been two years now that Lu Lu Awng hasn’t lived in her homeland.

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