We wish that this was only a metaphor: thousands of refugees living in former prisons. Sadly, it is the harsh reality. With nowhere else to go, disenfranchised and dispossessed, many of the IDPs and refugees have been housed by the authorities in grim former Saddam Hussein-era prisons. However, flowers are starting to bloom on the concrete. Doves are flying around sentinel towers and pastoral scenes unrolling along perimeter walls. Armed only with brushes and paint, Lucy and
In the weeks that has given us packed ships being rescued off the coast of Italy, with images of the thousands of refugees huddled in the hold, as well as the news of Lebanon declaring that it cannot take any more refugees, and the more troubling news of terror in Paris; it is important to remember what we have done, what we are doing, and what we are trying to achieve in the face of persecution and terror. The Ankawa Foundation is new, an organisation built out of the disast
As a Priest friend of mine said recently, 'Do they know it's Christmas? Yes, because they believe in Jesus Christ they had to flee for their lives.' Yet despite the chaos that their lives have descended into, Christmas is still a time for hope. To make the best of a bad situation, the photo above shows the Nativity at the Mar Ellia Church in Ankawa - a poignant image of the Christ child born into the tent of a refugee, seeking shelter from persecution, to which the Priest, Fa
Wow! What a week we have had. The response to our campaign for support has been truly overwhelming. We now have a huge array of very good quality winter clothing we are able to deliver to the churches to support those in need in Northern Iraq this winter. From ski coats, overcoats, gillets, hats, scarfs, jumpers, jeans, cords, jackets, cardigans and some very robust winter boots, we will be able to make a real difference to those in need. Due to the huge volume of donation we
This Friday we expanded our work beyond the camp at Mar Elias. Working with the congregation of Mar Elias and the loca Baptist church, we took food, clothes and shoes to IDPs in a makshift camp on the edge of the city. These IDPs are Muslim families, unable to enter the city, or find refuge in the overcrowded camps. In the past they were self sufficient and managing to cope, but as weeks have turned into months they have started to seek help, and we are working to offer that.
We are currently in the throws of turning our appeal into a charity. This takes time. The paperwork is being finalised and will be submitted to the Charity Commission in England and Wales shortly. We will update people as time passes on our progress, and look forward to becoming a fully fledged charity in the very near future. #charity #ankawa