The human face of violence in Syria
With tens of thousands fleeing violence in Syria, we may get overwhelmed by the numbers. Dorcas nevertheless continues to supports the internally displaced and people fleeing to Jordan. The 14-year-old Khaled is one of them.
Khaled his escape
Khaled would never have thought that the year he turned fourteen would be such a life-changing year. He had sensed the tensions rising in his city in Syria and he had seen violence in his own country on television, but it did not seem to concern him too much. Fourteen-year-olds have other things on their mind, such as soccer players who could lead his favorite team to the next World Cup. Even when his father went to Jordan to find a safer place for his family to live, there was a degree of normalcy to his life that remained.
He will never forget the night his mother, two sisters and two brothers were told it was their chance to make it safe across the border. Some people were prepared to take them, but they would have to act quickly. Along the way they had to dispose their belongings. Somewhere close to the border they were surprised by gunshots. Khaled's mother pulled the younger children down to lie flat on the ground. Khaled was the last one to make it down. He remembers hearing his mom scream at the sight of blood coming from his head. The next thing he remembers is being in a hospital.
In the Swayda Hospital three days later, with the bullet still remaining in his head, he learned that his mother was killed the night of his injury. How surprised he was to see her walking later that day. She had been held in prison while he was hospitalized. He was so filled with relief at he sight of his mother, that he almost forgot about his injury. However, they still needed to get to Amman because the bullet could cause a serious infection. He was very relieved to see his father again in Amman.
Khaled's complete family arrived in northern Jordan. They were happy that they found each other again, but were still left with nothing else. Their neighbors had been kind and generous to them, but their empty, concrete room did not feel like a home. The neighbor told Khaled of a pastor who was delivering mattresses to refugees. Khaled found a way to contact him and the pastor delivered blankets and mattresses the same night. As Khaled reclines on one of the mattress in their concrete shell-turned-living room, his thoughts begin to drift back to playing soccer. When people ask him how is doing now, he responds, ‘fine'.