“In 2012, just after having graduated from high school, I fled Syria, my country, and I arrived in a refugee camp in the Kurdistan region of Iraq with my brother. Soon, I started volunteering as a teacher in the camp. I joined ACTED in 2013 as a teacher for refugees’ children within the Child and Youth Friendly spaces it manages. I also trained young people, who were part of the Youth Protection Committees, in organising activities for children; a few years later, it’s amazing for me to see that these youth I trained at the time are now involved in the activities for children in the camp. I saw a change in them, they continued their studies and graduated from university, achieving the dream I had had for myself as a teenager. After a few years as a Community Mobilizer, in 2017 I became a case worker in the Child Protection Unit; my work consists in supporting children with physical and psychosocial vulnerabilities with specialized case management. The main challenge is working with different communities, who speak different languages and have different cultural traditions. I was able to gain people’s trust, and to help parents to support their children in a positive way during the conflict. Seeing children happy is the best reward for me.”
I know what fleeing your home with nothing means, so I understand how people feel like. I know that every single thing we give makes the difference.
“The beginning of my career in the humanitarian sector dates 1991, when I started as a volunteer, carrying out food distributions for internally displaced people, and supporting NGOs in the area with translating from Kurdish to English. I lived abroad for many years, and when I finally came back in 2012, I joined a local NGO, and I got to know ACTED while working to build a refugee camp in Erbil governorate. I started as a Distribution Assistant with ACTED in 2014; distributing food and non-food items. I have been working with ACTED since then, and now I am a Programme Manager for a project of cash-based transfer in four camps for internally displaced people in Erbil governorate. I have been in a situation where I fled my home as well, with nothing with me, so I know how people feel. I know that everything we give eases their pain a little, and this is why I am happy to help and I love this job.”
Even if I don’t directly implement projects, I open the day for them to happen, by ensuring security conditions are suitable and ACTED is accepted in the area.
“When I finished high school, I started to work in a local security company, and that was the beginning of my career in security. I started to work with ACTED as a Security Officer in 2016. My daily work involves monitoring all security movements of ACTED staff especially in areas at risk, conducting assessments to ensure access in the locations where ACTED plans to bring humanitarian aid, briefing and advising the programme teams about security and access, updating contingency plans and security plans. I like to fix problems, and I feel I am doing something for the humanity. Even if I don’t directly implement projects, I do open the way for them, by ensuring security conditions are viable for humanitarian assistance to be deployed. This is what fulfills me most.”
“The ongoing conflict in Syria caused the displacement of many people who found refuge in neighbouring countries. The Kurdistan Region of Iraq is the one which welcomed us. Humanitarian actors like ACTED are mobilised to provide support to people affected by the crisis. Since the beginning of the Syrian crisis, ACTED has performed an effective role in providing help and support to our community and in particular in the establishment of Child Protection Units, Community Mobilization Teams and Child and Youth Friendly Spaces.
In Domiz 1 and 2, ACTED implements projects providing psychosocial support, recreational activities, non-formal education and vocational training for all refugee children. Within these projects, ACTED has been building our capacity in project development, appraisal, monitoring and evaluation, finance, logistics, human resources and audit; this will allow us to take ownership of the Child and Youth Friendly Spaces and to run these space ourselves in the future. In addition to this, we have been involved in the organisation of awareness-raising information sessions for children and parents in the camp, focused on child protection issues.
To continue to ensure the well-being of the children in the camp, members of the CSOs are willing to continue these psychosocial activities provided by ACTED, to empower the camp community, and give them the opportunity to be involved in many activities aimed at providing a safe and protective environments for children and youth, restoring a sense of normalcy, developing their social skills and strengthening friendships. We are very optimistic!”
The typical day in ACTED Logistic Department? 15 purchase requests, 37 vehicle trips, 10 warehouse movements, 30 e-mail per hour, 3 meetings, 77 Skype messages and 65 papers to sign.
“I have been working in Humanitarian Logistics and Supply Chain Management for the last four years, the last three of which with ACTED. I first was a procurement assistant in a refugee camp in Jordan; since then, I have been supporting the response to the Syrian refugee crisis in three different countries in the MENA region (Jordan, Syria and Iraq). Currently, I am the Country Logistic Manager in Iraq, supporting 38 emergency projects in five different sectors. Humanitarian logistic has always been my first choice, as it combines the understanding of planning and carrying out logistic operations in disaster relief. Logistic in the humanitarian sector is very different in term of system management and protocols: we are managing unstable demands and temporary warehouses without standardized technologies, we are faced to unpredictable situations within a very complex system. Ultimately, a humanitarian logistician prioritizes beneficiaries, not customers. And this is what I like most, to be part of a long chain of whose ultimate aim is working to ensure humanitarian dignity to the most vulnerable.”
“Ten years ago, I escaped the violence and insecurity in my city in Ninewa. When I fled, the support of my family and my teachers at school proved essential to me to get me through that difficult moment; this is why I promised myself I would have spent all my energy, time and knowledge in order to help people who are really in need. I had heard about ACTED many times, and finally joined the NGO last year as a WASH and Shelter Officer. I started working for a project aimed at supporting vulnerable individuals in Mosul with water provision and shelter distribution. The most challenging part of the project was providing emergency water supply in East Mosul, especially because of the uncertain security conditions and the difficulty to find clean and safe water sources. However, we managed to provide water to over 90,000 residents. As soon as we completed the project in Mosul, we started another one, whereby we built WASH infrastructure in Salamiyah 1 camp. This enabled to ensure access to water for the residents, thus addressing particularly high needs during summer time. I am proud to be part of this team and of working together to overcome all difficulties!”