The Refuge to Become Soran's First Refugee Camp
Just two days into returning to Northern Iraq work has already begun to transform our community center "The Refuge" into the first and only refugee camp in the Soran valley.
We met with the Mayor to discuss ways that we could help alleviate the refugee crisis that was growing in our town. Immediately he responds... “Today, I learned we have 32 families that are trying to stay in a building [near your Center], but they cannot pay the rent.”
We responded by saying that we’d like to see what we can do to house them on our property.
He said that that would be great and offered to supply all the tents that we would need and haul in some temporary toilets too, if we needed them. Then, he also said that he could have a water tanker come by every day to help supply us with the water that we needed.
This was just the confirmation that we needed to assure us that we were heading in the right direction. The next step was to run this proposal by the sub-district mayor, whose office was just 3 blocks from The Refuge community center.
We then met up with our local contacts and started planing on how we were going to transfer the property suitable for housing the refugee families. He instantly volunteered his bulldozer to come and plow down all the weeds and make the land level — ready to install the tents. We would also need to make a gravel pathway between the tents and haul in some rock to raise up the areas where we would place the tents, all of which he agreed to do right away.
We also went over further details for preparing the property and building to ready it for housing these families. This involves extending the height of the fence around the walls of the property, completing the upstair bathroom and kitchen facilities, and tiling the staircases of the building and put in guard rails/banisters.
Today, we made our way to The refuge to check on the things and discovered two bulldozers hard at work clearing the land for the tents. Off to the sub-disrtict mayors office we went and together with a representative from the 24 families that we will be housing, we discussed details of how we will be taking care of them.
Another visit to the mayors office and further discussions to iron out details such as food and water supply. We then left with the Mayor commending us on a job well done.
And so, in 6 days we will be welcoming 24 refugee families from Mosul into The Refuge. We are going to need both prayers and financial support to make this happen. The days are hot and busy, but we know this is just the beginning. We are trusting good for continued favor, strength, wisdom and provision.