March 15, 2011 the day the first bomb fell in the Syrian civil war. Seven years ago today. Seven years of non-stop fighting. Seven years of bombs and gunshots. Seven years of fear.
There are currently 6.1 million Syrians displaced in their own country. Many of these Refugees now live in Idlib, Syria. Idlib continues to feel the brunt of the war as more Syrians flee to it’s safety.
There are currently 5 million Syrian refugees scattered across the world. They have all lost at least one family member, some have lost their entire families and some families have been completely wiped out. Almost 500,000 Syrians have been killed because of the civil war and the number continues to grow.
There have been 402 new Refugee arrivals on the shores of Greece this week. There have been 4,192 new arrivals since the start of 2018. There is an estimated 462 who are dead/missing in the Mediterranean Sea since 2018.
Three quarters of Syrian doctors have fled the country. Those who remain face daily airstrikes and have been forced to operate with very limited resources. Almost 3 million Syrian refugees are children. Children who have seen their friends and family members die, children who have known nothing but a life of war. One in Three schools have been destroyed and children are missing out on vital education, children who want to live in peace.
It’s been 2 years since I met a Syrian refugee. Two years since my heart has been broken for refugees. Two years since my life has been forever changed because of meeting a Syria. Two years of wanting to do more. Two years of God’s prompting.
One reason to welcome refugees, because they are mothers, fathers, daughter, sons, children, doctors, lawyers, teachers, humans, they are More than Numbers. We must not forget and be silent. We must acknowledge this war and we must do more.
More than Numbers has been birthed out of a civil war that is destroying a country. But we will strive to meet their needs. To hear their heart breaking stories. To cry with them when they cry and to let them know they are loved and that their country will not be forgotten.