Category: Appeals

The ‘treasure’ carpets helping Syrians rebuild their lives

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Syrian-carpets-blog“Syrian carpets are like treasure for us, their designs are so elaborate.”

Head down and pencil in hand, Manal is putting the finishing touches to her colourful carpet.

It may only be in the design stage at the moment, but the 33-year-old will soon begin stitching her carpet for real.

As she will tell you, this is no ordinary carpet. This is an authentic Syrian carpet – known the world over for their intricate designs and handmade quality.

“Syrian carpets are so beautiful and are part of our culture,” said Manal. “You can’t find carpets like them anywhere else in the world.” More

Volunteers on the front lines

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Two Red Cross volunteers hold and comfort an injured child

What happens when the day you have spent years preparing for suddenly comes without warning?

In April, Red Cross volunteer Jorge Chele Santana was spending a peaceful afternoon with his father, wife and son.

Suddenly the ground shook violently and the family rushed outside. They didn’t realise at first that their home town of Manta, Ecuador, was near the epicentre of a major earthquake.

The city was hit hard and help was needed immediately.

“I remember calming down my 17-year-old son, who also happens to be a Red Cross volunteer,” Jorge said.

“I looked him in the eye and said ‘son, it’s time to show what we’ve prepared for, what we’ve been trained to do and remember why we are part of the Red Cross.’

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Seven days that shook Syria

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Syria-AleppoIt has been a traumatic week in Syria – more so than usual. Numerous attacks on hospitals in Aleppo have robbed people of vital health care and highlighted a flagrant disregard for humanitarian law.  Find out what happened and our response.

It began on 27 April with an attack on an Aleppo hospital and the death of a leading doctor that hit the headlines.

The Al Quds hospital in eastern Aleppo was completely destroyed. The hospital was supported by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF).

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Letters from a crisis: goodbye to new friends

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boy

Having spent a month in a refugee camp in northern Greece, Gwen Wilson is now preparing to say goodbye.  

Some of her refugee volunteers have decided to apply for asylum in Greece. Others are still hoping the borders will open.

Writing to you for the final time, retired nurse Gwen gives her impressions on life on the front line of Europe’s refugee crisis.  

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Letters from a crisis: local help and a premature baby

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mother and young child

How do you begin to organise a refugee camp?

Gwen Wilson has seen it all. After retiring as a nurse, she worked in Sierra Leone during the Ebola crisis. Now Gwen has swapped her life in Sheffield for a refugee camp in northern Greece.

Writing to you from Thessalonica, Gwen gives her impressions of life on the front line of Europe’s refugee crisis.         

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Syria – where do we go from here?

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Devastation in Homs

Syria today is a source of both hope and frustration.

Over the weekend, one hundred trucks carrying food and medical supplies reached the besieged town of Al Rastan for the first time since 2012.

Yet still people are forced to flee their homes. One day earlier, the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) evacuated more than 500 people from Madaya, Zabadani, Foua and Kefraya.

There’s a perception among some in the outside world that the situation in Syria is getting better now. It’s not.

Even in areas that have experienced a respite from the constant thud of mortars, the eerie silence that remains reveals another problem. How will people ever come back and pick up the pieces?

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Letters from a crisis: ‘how can this be happening in the EU?’

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grandmother and child
Ever wondered what it’s really like to work in an emergency?

Gwen Wilson has seen it all. After retiring as a nurse, she worked in Sierra Leone during the Ebola crisis. Now Gwen has swapped her life in Sheffield for a refugee camp in northern Greece.

Writing to you from Thessalonica, Gwen gives her reflections on supporting refugees in Greece.

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