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We Were Like Those That Dream

Chapter 1: Shariya Camp tells part of the story of Building Hope, and Rebuilding Lives in a 20,000 person camp for Yezidis thrust out of Sinjar in August 2014. 

On Monday September 5th 2022 at 5 pm, we formally handed the home owners keys to their new homes. Pir Dayan Jaafar, Director of the Ministry for Migration and Crisis Control participated along with Salah Hassan Khudeeda, MCC officer and Jalal Lazgeen, Shariya Camp Manager in this quietly monumental event. 


He thanked us. He thanked all of you who helped  us to change the course of history. He commissioned us. ‘ We need you to build more. Please do not stop. Please thank your donors and ask them to continue to help the people from Sinjar. These people need your hope. These people need your help. “

"During this past year, I have thought deeply about the demolition of an existing structure prior to erecting the new model, the new structure. We have spent much of this Biblical year building, whether Horses for Hope, and now the Building Hope project inside Shariya camp.


I have been watching the demolition of tents, the demolition of the status “ displaced” and “ homeless” and observing how the possession of a key, a door and blocks is bringing a period of eight years of displacement to an end.  The restoration of a wounded spirit has taken place within three days. 


“ When the Lord turned again the captivity of Zion, we were like them that dream. Then our mouth was filled with laughter and our tongue with singing: then they said among the nations, The Lord has done great things for them. “ Psalm 126

It will take time for me to process these weeks of Building Hope. It is a great responsibility to be those who are given  authority by the government  to usher in change, to bring an eight year cycle  of loss to a close and open the door to a new beginning whilst working in silence and ensuring that peace is maintained inside the camp. As much focus has gone on keeping the peace as it has on being present on the building sites dotted around the camp. 


Only when I saw the photos of Abu Majid’s pink house was I able to rejoice . Only when Hala sent photos of her and Nasser painting their dream home blue and white, did I catch the spirit of “ we were like those who dream “ Only when I saw the smile broader  on Adnan’s face that extended beyond his ears , could I allow my heart to smile."

- Lisa

Want to learn more about the Building Hope project? Check out our E-Mag below to read the stories and see images of the individuals who received keys to their new home.

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