Azraq

Day Four in Jordan – Jaz’s Diary – Azraq Camp

Azraq camp took my breath away. I couldn’t believe it. Rows and rows of shelters, thousands and THOUSANDS of them, as far as the eye could see, in every direction, in the midst of the desert.

Life here is impossible. With temperatures of up to 50 degrees in the summer and below zero in the winter, (even snow on the ground,) the thousands of people living in metal boxes with no electricity, experience a constant struggle.

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They have access to NOTHING. No heating, no fans, no phone reception, no internet, no shops, no freedom. The camp is vast and far from anything, meaning the kids walk for ages, across challenging terrain, just to get to the school we were working in today.

Residents can apply for permission to leave the camp for up to 7 days in the year but I can’t even imagine where they could possibly go on those days, we drove for two hours into the desert to get there… For the rest of the year they are completely trapped, clinging on to the hope that some day soon, something will change, and they can go home, back to Syria.

The amazing thing about working within the incredible school facilities provided by Relief International is that it was the only place we saw any colour. Not just on the murals covering the walls, but in the demeanour of the children, who still laugh and play and sing and run around, despite the trauma most have gone through.

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Kids are my inspiration in this respect. They are so in the moment, dealing only with the here and now, everything focused on ‘right-this-second.’ And this is the only way.

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In this situation, thinking about the past or the future is enough to break you; embracing only what is right this minute, what is real right now, is the only way to keep going; one day, one hour, one moment at a time…

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