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  Syrian Refugees in Jordan (Ongoing work)   Since the start of the Syrian conflict in March 2011 more than 2.5 million Syrians have been displaced beyond the borders of their homeland, with most seeking refuge in Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon.   So far 596,062** Syrians have registered under refugee status  with the UNHCR in Jordan, and approximately 20% of those registered have been placed in UNHCR designated settlements including Zaatari with 101,402* persons of concern, Cyber City with approximately 500 and King Abdullah Park with in excess of 1000 residents. Almost 80% of the refugee population live in informal camps and settlements in urban and rural areas    (picture) Mother pushes child in pram in Zaatari refugee camp in Northern Jordan.      *   number correct as at 4th May 2014     **    number correct as at 20th May 2014

Syrian Refugees in Jordan (Ongoing work)

Since the start of the Syrian conflict in March 2011 more than 2.5 million Syrians have been displaced beyond the borders of their homeland, with most seeking refuge in Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon.

So far 596,062** Syrians have registered under refugee status with the UNHCR in Jordan, and approximately 20% of those registered have been placed in UNHCR designated settlements including Zaatari with 101,402* persons of concern, Cyber City with approximately 500 and King Abdullah Park with in excess of 1000 residents. Almost 80% of the refugee population live in informal camps and settlements in urban and rural areas

(picture) Mother pushes child in pram in Zaatari refugee camp in Northern Jordan.

*number correct as at 4th May 2014

** number correct as at 20th May 2014

 Children hitch a ride on the back of a pickup truck leaving Zaatari refugee camp.

Children hitch a ride on the back of a pickup truck leaving Zaatari refugee camp.

 Barbed wire around UNHCR receiving centre.

Barbed wire around UNHCR receiving centre.

 In the 2 years since it accepted its first refugees, Zaatari camp has become the 2nd largest refugee camp in the world, the 6th largest city in Jordan and is home to the world's largest concentration of Syrian refugees. (more than 120,000 within 2 square miles) The camp now operates as a fully functioning society with schools, hospitals, youth centres, and a busy commercial street, named The Champs-Élysées (after the famous Parisian shopping avenue.) by Aid workers.   

In the 2 years since it accepted its first refugees, Zaatari camp has become the 2nd largest refugee camp in the world, the 6th largest city in Jordan and is home to the world's largest concentration of Syrian refugees. (more than 120,000 within 2 square miles) The camp now operates as a fully functioning society with schools, hospitals, youth centres, and a busy commercial street, named The Champs-Élysées (after the famous Parisian shopping avenue.) by Aid workers.

 

 Tanker delivers fresh water to Zaatari camp.  Over one million gallons of water is delivered to to the site every day.     The w  ater is tested for contaminants prior to being transported but not after arrival in camp.   There is a high risk of water becoming contaminated during transportation from source. 

Tanker delivers fresh water to Zaatari camp. Over one million gallons of water is delivered to to the site every day.

The water is tested for contaminants prior to being transported but not after arrival in camp. There is a high risk of water becoming contaminated during transportation from source. 

 Children play in front of large freshwater tank, one of almost 500 situated in Zaatari. 

Children play in front of large freshwater tank, one of almost 500 situated in Zaatari. 

 Families gather in a communal area outside Cyber City refugee camp's accommodation block.   Cyber City camp is a seven storey accommodation block at the back-end of a dusty industrial complex near the town of   Ramtha in Jordan's arid, desolate Irbid Governorate. It is home to approximately 500 refugees, many of whom are already refugees from Palestine.

Families gather in a communal area outside Cyber City refugee camp's accommodation block.

Cyber City camp is a seven storey accommodation block at the back-end of a dusty industrial complex near the town of Ramtha in Jordan's arid, desolate Irbid Governorate. It is home to approximately 500 refugees, many of whom are already refugees from Palestine.

  Until 2 years ago, Om, 41 years from Daraa, lived with her family in a hotspot of fighting. Government forces would enter homes and beat, kidnap and kill civilians. Om has lived in Cyber City refugee camp since arriving in Jordan in 2012.     They made two attempts to flee Syria, the first attempt was abandoned after they came under gunfire from Syrian government forces. They took shelter with a family and received protection from the Free Syria Army. They eventually made a second attempt to cross into Jordan with the FSA securing their path to the border near Tel Shab.     Om lives in Cyber city with 9 other family members, with two children having been born since they arrived.

Until 2 years ago, Om, 41 years from Daraa, lived with her family in a hotspot of fighting. Government forces would enter homes and beat, kidnap and kill civilians. Om has lived in Cyber City refugee camp since arriving in Jordan in 2012. 

They made two attempts to flee Syria, the first attempt was abandoned after they came under gunfire from Syrian government forces. They took shelter with a family and received protection from the Free Syria Army. They eventually made a second attempt to cross into Jordan with the FSA securing their path to the border near Tel Shab.

Om lives in Cyber city with 9 other family members, with two children having been born since they arrived.

  Abed walks, head down, along a cold marble-tiled hallway and comes to a stop, slipping off his sandals at a UNHCR emblazoned blanket hanging from a strip of wire in front of one of his family's rooms on the 5th floor of Cyber City refugee camp.   He lives here with his wife and children along with close to 500 more Syrian refugees.     For the past year and a half Abed, his wife and their four children have lived between two small rooms in this run-down, re-purposed office block.     Like most Syrian refugees, Abed’s story is a tragic one. Sitting in his family’s 3m x 5m room he pours tea from an ornate silver pot and then lights up a cigarette and slowly exhales a faint plume of smoke into the grey, dismal room. He rests his hand on his youngest son Mustafa, who is fast asleep under a heavy fleece blanket  by Abed's side.  A net curtain blows in the gentle breeze from the open but caged window. He stares blankly at the scant remnants of his family’s belongings which are stacked in the corner of their room behind the door at which his eldest son leans against the frame. Their few belongings are mixed with UNHCR issued blankets, cushions, cooking utensils and some provisions. They were unable to take much with them when they finally left their home in Homs.

Abed walks, head down, along a cold marble-tiled hallway and comes to a stop, slipping off his sandals at a UNHCR emblazoned blanket hanging from a strip of wire in front of one of his family's rooms on the 5th floor of Cyber City refugee camp. He lives here with his wife and children along with close to 500 more Syrian refugees.

For the past year and a half Abed, his wife and their four children have lived between two small rooms in this run-down, re-purposed office block.

Like most Syrian refugees, Abed’s story is a tragic one. Sitting in his family’s 3m x 5m room he pours tea from an ornate silver pot and then lights up a cigarette and slowly exhales a faint plume of smoke into the grey, dismal room. He rests his hand on his youngest son Mustafa, who is fast asleep under a heavy fleece blanket  by Abed's side.  A net curtain blows in the gentle breeze from the open but caged window. He stares blankly at the scant remnants of his family’s belongings which are stacked in the corner of their room behind the door at which his eldest son leans against the frame. Their few belongings are mixed with UNHCR issued blankets, cushions, cooking utensils and some provisions. They were unable to take much with them when they finally left their home in Homs.

  After sipping some sweet black tea and taking another long draw on his cigarette, Abed talks about his life before the conflict. For many years he owned a grocery store selling fresh fruits and vegetables. He worked long hours, rising early and finishing late. It was tough work but he enjoyed it and it was a successful enough business, enough to provide a home for his family and they were a happy family.    Things changed dramatically on the night of the   30th of December 2011 when Syrian government soldiers forcibly entered Abed’s home and ordered him and his family out into the street. In an unprovoked attack, soldiers brutally beat Abed in front of his distraught children; severely injuring him and leaving him unconscious. Thinking he was dead, the soldiers went in search of gasoline in order to burn his lifeless body- At the time Baba Amr had been under siege for nearly a year. Food and fuel supplies to the area were almost non-existent and what fuel supplies had been there at the start of the siege had long since been exhausted.  So the soldiers left. Miraculously Abed regained consciousness and survived but was almost completely incapacitated for 2 weeks. To this day he is still disabled in his left arm and will likely never regain full function.    

After sipping some sweet black tea and taking another long draw on his cigarette, Abed talks about his life before the conflict. For many years he owned a grocery store selling fresh fruits and vegetables. He worked long hours, rising early and finishing late. It was tough work but he enjoyed it and it was a successful enough business, enough to provide a home for his family and they were a happy family.

Things changed dramatically on the night of the 30th of December 2011 when Syrian government soldiers forcibly entered Abed’s home and ordered him and his family out into the street. In an unprovoked attack, soldiers brutally beat Abed in front of his distraught children; severely injuring him and leaving him unconscious. Thinking he was dead, the soldiers went in search of gasoline in order to burn his lifeless body- At the time Baba Amr had been under siege for nearly a year. Food and fuel supplies to the area were almost non-existent and what fuel supplies had been there at the start of the siege had long since been exhausted.  So the soldiers left. Miraculously Abed regained consciousness and survived but was almost completely incapacitated for 2 weeks. To this day he is still disabled in his left arm and will likely never regain full function.

 

  In January of 2012 whilst Abed was still recovering from the injuries sustained from his attack. Forces began a violent bombardment of Baba Amr. The assault lasted over one month.       “My children would watch the chaos from our building. They saw people dying. Blood. Bleeding. The sound was horrible. The situation went on like this for over  one month and then the army finally entered the neighbourhood”           Abed says calmly as Mustafa begins to stir. ( Mustafa lived the first year of his life in war torn Syria. Because the area was cut off from basic supplies, Mustafa was not given the appropriate diet to aid his development. In lieu of milk he was given water with a little sugar. The impact of his malnutrition has led to subsequent health issues.)   In March 2012 Government Forces entered Baba Amr. Civilians were summarily arrested and many of those detained were disappeared. Once again government soldiers forcibly entered Abed’s home and he was arrested for affiliation with the Free Syria Army (FSA). He was held for a short time until the FSA negotiated with government forces and Hezbollah militants connected with the regime, for the reciprocal release of prisoners.

In January of 2012 whilst Abed was still recovering from the injuries sustained from his attack. Forces began a violent bombardment of Baba Amr. The assault lasted over one month. 

“My children would watch the chaos from our building. They saw people dying. Blood. Bleeding. The sound was horrible. The situation went on like this for over  one month and then the army finally entered the neighbourhood” Abed says calmly as Mustafa begins to stir. (Mustafa lived the first year of his life in war torn Syria. Because the area was cut off from basic supplies, Mustafa was not given the appropriate diet to aid his development. In lieu of milk he was given water with a little sugar. The impact of his malnutrition has led to subsequent health issues.)

In March 2012 Government Forces entered Baba Amr. Civilians were summarily arrested and many of those detained were disappeared. Once again government soldiers forcibly entered Abed’s home and he was arrested for affiliation with the Free Syria Army (FSA). He was held for a short time until the FSA negotiated with government forces and Hezbollah militants connected with the regime, for the reciprocal release of prisoners.

    “Two to three people were dying each day in prison”      Abed says     “      My family were sure that I had been killed but just over a week after being arrested I went home to them”.       The risk of being arrested again was high; Almost certain. So Abed made the decision to move the family from Baba Amr and they headed to Aleppo - which at the time was considered much safer than Homs - His family of 8 along with 11 other people, including a neighbour and his son, managed to find a bus and driver to transport them out of the city.

“Two to three people were dying each day in prison”  Abed saysMy family were sure that I had been killed but just over a week after being arrested I went home to them”.

The risk of being arrested again was high; Almost certain. So Abed made the decision to move the family from Baba Amr and they headed to Aleppo - which at the time was considered much safer than Homs - His family of 8 along with 11 other people, including a neighbour and his son, managed to find a bus and driver to transport them out of the city.

  Just 10km from the outskirts of Homs the bus came under heavy gunfire. And they were forced to return to the city. Tragically during the ensuing assault Abed's eldest son, Yaheer (12) and middle son Bilal (7) were killed. Relaying the events Abed’s voice shows little emotion almost as though his grief is still too far beyond his ability to comprehend. he pulls his mobile phone from his pocket and shows photographs of the lifeless bodies of his two children. Their small bodies wrapped in clear plastic during the preparations for their burial. His hand wavers slightly.

Just 10km from the outskirts of Homs the bus came under heavy gunfire. And they were forced to return to the city. Tragically during the ensuing assault Abed's eldest son, Yaheer (12) and middle son Bilal (7) were killed. Relaying the events Abed’s voice shows little emotion almost as though his grief is still too far beyond his ability to comprehend. he pulls his mobile phone from his pocket and shows photographs of the lifeless bodies of his two children. Their small bodies wrapped in clear plastic during the preparations for their burial. His hand wavers slightly.

  At first glance Murad is much like any average young man. He sits with his cousin laughing and joking. occasionally looking at messages on his mobile phone. He shifts awkwardly in his chair and winces at the sharp burst of pain in the upper part of his left leg (which is amputated above the knee.) He is one of the first arrivals of the day at the fortnightly Handicap International orthosis and prosthesis clinic in Zaatari camp.    Within a short time the sheltered waiting area fills out with scores of Syrians who have suffered horrific injuries as a result of the war, others arrive with pre-existing conditions, or degenerative physical ailments.    Murad suffered severe injuries to his left leg - resulting in amputation above the knee- in late 2013 during a bomb blast in his neighbourhood In Daraa. As a result of the attack one person was killed, 2 (Including Murad) suffered severe injuries to their legs and 7 others sustained minor injuries. Murad spent 2 days at a small hospital before being transported across the border to Jordan.     Once in Jordan Murad was admitted to Al-Yarmouk hospital in Irbid where he spent three weeks. During this time he underwent extensive surgery to treat his wounds. After his initial recovery he was transferred to Zaatari refugee camp where he has lived and undergone the long and difficult process of physical rehabilitation.    Murad's mother and father are still living in Daraa as they are too unwell to travel for the time needed to get to the border.

At first glance Murad is much like any average young man. He sits with his cousin laughing and joking. occasionally looking at messages on his mobile phone. He shifts awkwardly in his chair and winces at the sharp burst of pain in the upper part of his left leg (which is amputated above the knee.) He is one of the first arrivals of the day at the fortnightly Handicap International orthosis and prosthesis clinic in Zaatari camp.

Within a short time the sheltered waiting area fills out with scores of Syrians who have suffered horrific injuries as a result of the war, others arrive with pre-existing conditions, or degenerative physical ailments.

Murad suffered severe injuries to his left leg - resulting in amputation above the knee- in late 2013 during a bomb blast in his neighbourhood In Daraa. As a result of the attack one person was killed, 2 (Including Murad) suffered severe injuries to their legs and 7 others sustained minor injuries. Murad spent 2 days at a small hospital before being transported across the border to Jordan. 

Once in Jordan Murad was admitted to Al-Yarmouk hospital in Irbid where he spent three weeks. During this time he underwent extensive surgery to treat his wounds. After his initial recovery he was transferred to Zaatari refugee camp where he has lived and undergone the long and difficult process of physical rehabilitation.

Murad's mother and father are still living in Daraa as they are too unwell to travel for the time needed to get to the border.

  Murad waits for his prosthesis specialist to fit his artificial leg during a fitting session at a Handicap International clinic in Zaatari camp.    It is estimated that close to 6% of Syrian refugees living in Jordan and Lebanon have suffered life altering injuries as a result of the war (almost 85,000 individuals from the overall displaced population.) 1 in 4 of those injured will face permanent disability.

Murad waits for his prosthesis specialist to fit his artificial leg during a fitting session at a Handicap International clinic in Zaatari camp.

It is estimated that close to 6% of Syrian refugees living in Jordan and Lebanon have suffered life altering injuries as a result of the war (almost 85,000 individuals from the overall displaced population.) 1 in 4 of those injured will face permanent disability.

 Murad undergoes regular physiotherapy sessions to learn to walk properly with his prosthesis.

Murad undergoes regular physiotherapy sessions to learn to walk properly with his prosthesis.

  14 year old Dergham quietly sits on a hospital bed with his legs swinging below him. His sturdy shoes belying the horrific injuries he has sustained to his feet. Moments earlier he had limped shyly into the clinic. He glances out of the small window of the prefab building in the Handicap International clinic. The bright March sun beating down on Zaatari camp. The Prosthetics specialist who has made his bi-monthly visit to Zaatari camp promptly begins his consultation.     Dergham was badly injured during shelling of his neighbourhood in Damascus. He had arrived at the scene of an earlier bombing in which one of his cousins had been injured. Whilst Dergham attempted to help his relative to hospital, a second round of shelling began and he was hit by shrapnel from a nearby exploding shell. He was rushed to hospital where he spent two weeks undergoing an number of operations to clean wounds to his feet and legs. After 4 months recovering his family made the decision to send him, on his own, to a safer area of Syria and then he eventually made his way to Jordan to live with his older brother and family    After arriving and registering as a refugee in Jordan he was admitted to Dulil hospital in Zarqa, where he spent 15 days and had 3 operations, 2 to clean his wounds and a further operation to help reconstruct his right foot at the ankle.     Dergham's parents still live inside Syria taking the difficult decision to remain for the safety of their youngest children as the journey is far too dangerous to risk travel.    Dergham is still in occasional contact through use of Jordanian cellphone networks

14 year old Dergham quietly sits on a hospital bed with his legs swinging below him. His sturdy shoes belying the horrific injuries he has sustained to his feet. Moments earlier he had limped shyly into the clinic. He glances out of the small window of the prefab building in the Handicap International clinic. The bright March sun beating down on Zaatari camp. The Prosthetics specialist who has made his bi-monthly visit to Zaatari camp promptly begins his consultation.

Dergham was badly injured during shelling of his neighbourhood in Damascus. He had arrived at the scene of an earlier bombing in which one of his cousins had been injured. Whilst Dergham attempted to help his relative to hospital, a second round of shelling began and he was hit by shrapnel from a nearby exploding shell. He was rushed to hospital where he spent two weeks undergoing an number of operations to clean wounds to his feet and legs. After 4 months recovering his family made the decision to send him, on his own, to a safer area of Syria and then he eventually made his way to Jordan to live with his older brother and family

After arriving and registering as a refugee in Jordan he was admitted to Dulil hospital in Zarqa, where he spent 15 days and had 3 operations, 2 to clean his wounds and a further operation to help reconstruct his right foot at the ankle. 

Dergham's parents still live inside Syria taking the difficult decision to remain for the safety of their youngest children as the journey is far too dangerous to risk travel.

Dergham is still in occasional contact through use of Jordanian cellphone networks

 Dergham shows his severely damaged feet as he waits for an orthosis cast of his right foot to be made.

Dergham shows his severely damaged feet as he waits for an orthosis cast of his right foot to be made.

 Doctor's sketch showing how Dergham's planned orthosis will fit around his damaged foot.

Doctor's sketch showing how Dergham's planned orthosis will fit around his damaged foot.

 Doctor makes a plaster cast of Dergham's heavily damaged foot.

Doctor makes a plaster cast of Dergham's heavily damaged foot.

  Qasem, a 10 year old refugee with dwarfism, from Daraa in Syria, laughs at a joke during an orthosis assessment at a Handicap International clinic in Zaatari camp, Mafraq, Jordan.    In addition to individuals with disabilities caused by war injuries, there are many Syrian refugees that have pre-existing conditions and physical impairments that make mobility in the harsh conditions of Zaatari camp difficult.

Qasem, a 10 year old refugee with dwarfism, from Daraa in Syria, laughs at a joke during an orthosis assessment at a Handicap International clinic in Zaatari camp, Mafraq, Jordan. 

In addition to individuals with disabilities caused by war injuries, there are many Syrian refugees that have pre-existing conditions and physical impairments that make mobility in the harsh conditions of Zaatari camp difficult.

  17 year old Fatima, a double amputee (right arm below elbow and left leg) - after being injured in a shelling - is fitted for a new prosthetic arm.

17 year old Fatima, a double amputee (right arm below elbow and left leg) - after being injured in a shelling - is fitted for a new prosthetic arm.

  Omran, a 21 year old became a double amputee after being severely injured in a bomb blast in Daraa. He attends a prosthetics fitting at a Handicap International clinic in Zaatari Refugee camp in Mafraq, Jordan. In addition to physical rehabilitation Omran undergoes regular psychological counselling sessions and is under close attention after an attempted suicide in January 2014.

Omran, a 21 year old became a double amputee after being severely injured in a bomb blast in Daraa. He attends a prosthetics fitting at a Handicap International clinic in Zaatari Refugee camp in Mafraq, Jordan. In addition to physical rehabilitation Omran undergoes regular psychological counselling sessions and is under close attention after an attempted suicide in January 2014.

 Omran's cousin carries one of Omran's prosthetic legs.

Omran's cousin carries one of Omran's prosthetic legs.

  Rehabilitation from injuries that effect mobility is difficult in most circumstances, but for Syrian refugees living in the harsh conditions of Jordan's Mafraq region, as well as those displaced within Syria itself and in other neighbouring countries that have insufficient means to support the influx of displaced Syrians, these difficulties are manifold.

Rehabilitation from injuries that effect mobility is difficult in most circumstances, but for Syrian refugees living in the harsh conditions of Jordan's Mafraq region, as well as those displaced within Syria itself and in other neighbouring countries that have insufficient means to support the influx of displaced Syrians, these difficulties are manifold.

  Kurdia, a 50 year old Syrian refugee living out-of-camp in Mafraq area undergoes a physiotherapy session for severe back pains at a Handicap International Clinic in Mafraq city centre, Jordan.    Many elderly refugees suffer from degenerative conditions commonly associated with old age, such as Arthritis, rheumatism and other infirmities. Such conditions are exacerbated greatly by living in harsh conditions.

Kurdia, a 50 year old Syrian refugee living out-of-camp in Mafraq area undergoes a physiotherapy session for severe back pains at a Handicap International Clinic in Mafraq city centre, Jordan.

Many elderly refugees suffer from degenerative conditions commonly associated with old age, such as Arthritis, rheumatism and other infirmities. Such conditions are exacerbated greatly by living in harsh conditions.

 Children play in the laundry area of King Abdullah Garden refugee camp.

Children play in the laundry area of King Abdullah Garden refugee camp.

  29 year old Ahmed comes from the Southern Syrian city of Daraa. He has lived with his wife and two children at King Abdullah Garden refugee camp near Mafraq for the past 2 years. Ahmed's father and 20 year old sister were killed in the conflict and some relatives are still living in Syria – others are living in nearby Zaatari camp in Jordan.     Ahmed and his family crossed into Jordan via the Tal Shihab crossing point in North west Jordan. The family of 8 used two cars and the journey was long and tough. At points they came under direct fire from government forces. In Tal Shahib there were many people trying to escape to Jordan- almost 2000.       "Members of the Free Syria army met us there and secured us all safe passage out of the country to the Jordanian border."   Ahmed says         None of the family have attempted to return to Syria. Ahmed's youngest daughter Noor was born in a refugee in Jordan.    There are 190 families living in King Abdullah Garden and Ahmed and his family are happy given the difficult situation they are in. but they see the situation deteriorating as the western world and their Arab brothers and sisters become more weary of their plight and offer less and less support.      “The western world need to support the Free Syria Army”   he says   “It's enough now with Bashar killing our people because the west waste time. The more time he spends in control the more death and destruction there will be”   

29 year old Ahmed comes from the Southern Syrian city of Daraa. He has lived with his wife and two children at King Abdullah Garden refugee camp near Mafraq for the past 2 years. Ahmed's father and 20 year old sister were killed in the conflict and some relatives are still living in Syria – others are living in nearby Zaatari camp in Jordan. 

Ahmed and his family crossed into Jordan via the Tal Shihab crossing point in North west Jordan. The family of 8 used two cars and the journey was long and tough. At points they came under direct fire from government forces. In Tal Shahib there were many people trying to escape to Jordan- almost 2000.

"Members of the Free Syria army met us there and secured us all safe passage out of the country to the Jordanian border." Ahmed says

 None of the family have attempted to return to Syria. Ahmed's youngest daughter Noor was born in a refugee in Jordan.

There are 190 families living in King Abdullah Garden and Ahmed and his family are happy given the difficult situation they are in. but they see the situation deteriorating as the western world and their Arab brothers and sisters become more weary of their plight and offer less and less support.

“The western world need to support the Free Syria Army” he says “It's enough now with Bashar killing our people because the west waste time. The more time he spends in control the more death and destruction there will be” 

    “The government forces and Hizzbollah often impersonate Free Syria Army soldiers in order to intercept UN support for their own benefit”        "I hope that the revolution ends soon because not only are the Syrian people suffering bu the Jordanians are suffering too. They have a big burden with all the refugees. And we will remember what they did when we return home”      After crossing into Jordan the family spent one month sleeping in a playground in Ramtha before moving to King Abdullah Garden.    The Government Army would force their way into our homes, insult us, force us to leave, There was constant shooting by snipers and many other weapons were used against the people.      “We left Syria at the right time, now we feel safe and Jordan is like our second home”.

“The government forces and Hizzbollah often impersonate Free Syria Army soldiers in order to intercept UN support for their own benefit”

"I hope that the revolution ends soon because not only are the Syrian people suffering bu the Jordanians are suffering too. They have a big burden with all the refugees. And we will remember what they did when we return home”

After crossing into Jordan the family spent one month sleeping in a playground in Ramtha before moving to King Abdullah Garden.

The Government Army would force their way into our homes, insult us, force us to leave, There was constant shooting by snipers and many other weapons were used against the people.

“We left Syria at the right time, now we feel safe and Jordan is like our second home”.

    "The Government Army would force their way into our homes, insult us, force us to leave, There was constant shooting by snipers and many other weapons were used against the people."        “We left Syria at the right time, now we feel safe and Jordan is like our second home”.

"The Government Army would force their way into our homes, insult us, force us to leave, There was constant shooting by snipers and many other weapons were used against the people."

“We left Syria at the right time, now we feel safe and Jordan is like our second home”.

 Members of Ahmed's family sit outside their accommodation block.

Members of Ahmed's family sit outside their accommodation block.

 An accommodation cabin is lifted off of a flatbed on the outskirts of Zaatari refugee camp.

An accommodation cabin is lifted off of a flatbed on the outskirts of Zaatari refugee camp.

 Man looks though the window of an under-construction shop near the main shopping district in Zaatari camp.

Man looks though the window of an under-construction shop near the main shopping district in Zaatari camp.

 An Informal refugee settlement on the Jordan/ Syria border. Home to around 7 Syrian families.

An Informal refugee settlement on the Jordan/ Syria border. Home to around 7 Syrian families.

  Nooran   Nooran (3) stands inside a tent on an informal refugee settlement along the Jordanian border with Syria. She has lived here with her 5 sisters, mother, father and uncle for the past year. the family live between a tent and a derelict travel agency. there are another 6 families living in the settlement.

Nooran

Nooran (3) stands inside a tent on an informal refugee settlement along the Jordanian border with Syria. She has lived here with her 5 sisters, mother, father and uncle for the past year. the family live between a tent and a derelict travel agency. there are another 6 families living in the settlement.

  Nooran (3), Najad (7) and Anfal (6 months) From Daraa, Syria, sit in the living area of their makeshift shelter inside an abandoned travel agency on the Jordanian border with Syria. They have lived here with their mother, father, uncle and 3 sisters for the past year. Anfal was born a refugee in a nearby hospital.

Nooran (3), Najad (7) and Anfal (6 months) From Daraa, Syria, sit in the living area of their makeshift shelter inside an abandoned travel agency on the Jordanian border with Syria. They have lived here with their mother, father, uncle and 3 sisters for the past year. Anfal was born a refugee in a nearby hospital.

 Bashar (left), 10 years old from Daraa, has lived in Jordan for just over one year. For 6 months he stayed in Zaatari camp but moved to an informal settlement on the Jordanian/ Syrian border. He is one of a family of 11 including his brother Omran (Right) who is 13.   The family left Syria for Jordan immediately after their home and family business was destroyed during a shelling of their neighbourhood on the 22nd of December 2012.  Of his 8 brothers and sisters only Bashar and an older sister attend formal education.  Bashar wants to be an engineer. Omran would like to be a doctor.

Bashar (left), 10 years old from Daraa, has lived in Jordan for just over one year. For 6 months he stayed in Zaatari camp but moved to an informal settlement on the Jordanian/ Syrian border. He is one of a family of 11 including his brother Omran (Right) who is 13. 

The family left Syria for Jordan immediately after their home and family business was destroyed during a shelling of their neighbourhood on the 22nd of December 2012.

Of his 8 brothers and sisters only Bashar and an older sister attend formal education.

Bashar wants to be an engineer. Omran would like to be a doctor.

 Bashar and his older brother enter their makeshift home in a derelict shop on the Jordan/ Syria border.

Bashar and his older brother enter their makeshift home in a derelict shop on the Jordan/ Syria border.

  Bashar stands inside an abandoned shop which has now become home to himself and his family.

Bashar stands inside an abandoned shop which has now become home to himself and his family.

 Mother checks in for an appointment at a UNFPA maternity care clinic at Zaatari camp.  There are around 10 - 12 births a day in Zaatari camp, both natural deliveries and c-sections. Up until June 2013 Medecins San Frontiers (MSF) dealt with all births in Zaatari, since their cessation of operations the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) have taken over responsibilities for deliveries and general pre- natal and post- natal care.

Mother checks in for an appointment at a UNFPA maternity care clinic at Zaatari camp.

There are around 10 - 12 births a day in Zaatari camp, both natural deliveries and c-sections. Up until June 2013 Medecins San Frontiers (MSF) dealt with all births in Zaatari, since their cessation of operations the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) have taken over responsibilities for deliveries and general pre- natal and post- natal care.

 A new mother receives contraceptive advice from a UNFPA doctor in Zaatari camp. There were 258 births in Zaatari between January 1st 2014 and Mid March. (over 600 in total since UNFPA took over responsibility in June 2013)

A new mother receives contraceptive advice from a UNFPA doctor in Zaatari camp. There were 258 births in Zaatari between January 1st 2014 and Mid March. (over 600 in total since UNFPA took over responsibility in June 2013)

 Art work on the walls of a youth support centre in Zaatari camp.

Art work on the walls of a youth support centre in Zaatari camp.

 Many young men living in Zaatari earn money from working as porters for new arrivals to the camp. for a small fee they help transport belongings.   (Left)   Sanad, 15 years old from Daraa has lived in Zaatari with 7 other family members for the past 18 months.     (Right)   Mohammed Hussein, 17 years old, from Herak, Daraa, and Abed 14 years old from Ankhel, Daraa.

Many young men living in Zaatari earn money from working as porters for new arrivals to the camp. for a small fee they help transport belongings.

(Left) Sanad, 15 years old from Daraa has lived in Zaatari with 7 other family members for the past 18 months. 

(Right) Mohammed Hussein, 17 years old, from Herak, Daraa, and Abed 14 years old from Ankhel, Daraa.

  (Left)   Omar, 17 years old from Gasem, Daraa has lived in Zaatari for 1 year.     (Right)  Mohammed Ibrahem, 18 years old, from Daraa. has lived in Zaatari refugee camp for 50 days.

(Left) Omar, 17 years old from Gasem, Daraa has lived in Zaatari for 1 year.

(Right) Mohammed Ibrahem, 18 years old, from Daraa. has lived in Zaatari refugee camp for 50 days.

 Cigarette stall on the Champs-Élysées.

Cigarette stall on the Champs-Élysées.

  47 year old Aysha is a proud woman. Strong, worldly, and the matriarch of a large family. She was a nurse in Damascus before the outbreak of war. Her husband, Mahmoud was a hospital maintenance worker when he “disappeared” in the early months of the Syrian conflict. Soon after, Aysha moved her family to Hama after fearing for their safety.    In Hama she worked at a  hospital that received patients from both sides of the conflict. On many occasions Government forces threatened her with arrest if she treated FSA soldiers and likewise FSA soldiers threatened her if she treated government soldiers. She fled Syria because she was put on a police wanted list because they beleived she was assisting the FSA. She knew that being arrested would mean that she would most definitely be killed. So she fled with her family (Including her cousins Aftem and Ayesha and her brothers Rashid and Khalid and their families.) 16 of them in total. They spent 2 weeks travelling by whatever means they could to get to the Jordanian border near Ruwaished. They registered in Rabad and then spent 2 days in Zaatari before leaving to live out-of-camp on the 7th of December 2013.    “At the time it was very cold and snowing. We used wood for fire and with some help from the aid agency ACTED"    ACTED gave the family 60 Jordanian Dinars which they were able to use to build a tent that could accommodate the family of 16. ACTED staff had promised to visit them, but over two months later they have not seen nor heard anything   “We feel cheated and ignored by them, they know we are here but now we're alone”    Every 15 days the family travel back to nearby Zaatari camp to pick up a voucher allowance of 9JD per person as well as a provisions box containing basic foodstuffs including Sugar, oil, bread and rice.    “I feel bad for all my family to have to go through this suffering. It's because of me. I would rather that the government had killed me than for my family to go through this... our children have no education now because we cant afford to buy supplies or even the costs to get them to the schools."

47 year old Aysha is a proud woman. Strong, worldly, and the matriarch of a large family. She was a nurse in Damascus before the outbreak of war. Her husband, Mahmoud was a hospital maintenance worker when he “disappeared” in the early months of the Syrian conflict. Soon after, Aysha moved her family to Hama after fearing for their safety. 

In Hama she worked at a  hospital that received patients from both sides of the conflict. On many occasions Government forces threatened her with arrest if she treated FSA soldiers and likewise FSA soldiers threatened her if she treated government soldiers. She fled Syria because she was put on a police wanted list because they beleived she was assisting the FSA. She knew that being arrested would mean that she would most definitely be killed. So she fled with her family (Including her cousins Aftem and Ayesha and her brothers Rashid and Khalid and their families.) 16 of them in total. They spent 2 weeks travelling by whatever means they could to get to the Jordanian border near Ruwaished. They registered in Rabad and then spent 2 days in Zaatari before leaving to live out-of-camp on the 7th of December 2013.

“At the time it was very cold and snowing. We used wood for fire and with some help from the aid agency ACTED"  ACTED gave the family 60 Jordanian Dinars which they were able to use to build a tent that could accommodate the family of 16. ACTED staff had promised to visit them, but over two months later they have not seen nor heard anything “We feel cheated and ignored by them, they know we are here but now we're alone”

Every 15 days the family travel back to nearby Zaatari camp to pick up a voucher allowance of 9JD per person as well as a provisions box containing basic foodstuffs including Sugar, oil, bread and rice.

“I feel bad for all my family to have to go through this suffering. It's because of me. I would rather that the government had killed me than for my family to go through this... our children have no education now because we cant afford to buy supplies or even the costs to get them to the schools."

  Scene outside Aysha's family's tent.

Scene outside Aysha's family's tent.

  Some of Aysha's family gather inside their tent.

Some of Aysha's family gather inside their tent.

 Aysha's son starts a fire in order to boil river water to make it safe to drink.

Aysha's son starts a fire in order to boil river water to make it safe to drink.

Syrian Refugees in Jordan (Ongoing work)

Since the start of the Syrian conflict in March 2011 more than 2.5 million Syrians have been displaced beyond the borders of their homeland, with most seeking refuge in Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon.

So far 596,062** Syrians have registered under refugee status with the UNHCR in Jordan, and approximately 20% of those registered have been placed in UNHCR designated settlements including Zaatari with 101,402* persons of concern, Cyber City with approximately 500 and King Abdullah Park with in excess of 1000 residents. Almost 80% of the refugee population live in informal camps and settlements in urban and rural areas

(picture) Mother pushes child in pram in Zaatari refugee camp in Northern Jordan.

*number correct as at 4th May 2014

** number correct as at 20th May 2014

Children hitch a ride on the back of a pickup truck leaving Zaatari refugee camp.

Barbed wire around UNHCR receiving centre.

In the 2 years since it accepted its first refugees, Zaatari camp has become the 2nd largest refugee camp in the world, the 6th largest city in Jordan and is home to the world's largest concentration of Syrian refugees. (more than 120,000 within 2 square miles) The camp now operates as a fully functioning society with schools, hospitals, youth centres, and a busy commercial street, named The Champs-Élysées (after the famous Parisian shopping avenue.) by Aid workers.

 

Tanker delivers fresh water to Zaatari camp. Over one million gallons of water is delivered to to the site every day.

The water is tested for contaminants prior to being transported but not after arrival in camp. There is a high risk of water becoming contaminated during transportation from source. 

Children play in front of large freshwater tank, one of almost 500 situated in Zaatari. 

Families gather in a communal area outside Cyber City refugee camp's accommodation block.

Cyber City camp is a seven storey accommodation block at the back-end of a dusty industrial complex near the town of Ramtha in Jordan's arid, desolate Irbid Governorate. It is home to approximately 500 refugees, many of whom are already refugees from Palestine.

Until 2 years ago, Om, 41 years from Daraa, lived with her family in a hotspot of fighting. Government forces would enter homes and beat, kidnap and kill civilians. Om has lived in Cyber City refugee camp since arriving in Jordan in 2012. 

They made two attempts to flee Syria, the first attempt was abandoned after they came under gunfire from Syrian government forces. They took shelter with a family and received protection from the Free Syria Army. They eventually made a second attempt to cross into Jordan with the FSA securing their path to the border near Tel Shab.

Om lives in Cyber city with 9 other family members, with two children having been born since they arrived.

Abed walks, head down, along a cold marble-tiled hallway and comes to a stop, slipping off his sandals at a UNHCR emblazoned blanket hanging from a strip of wire in front of one of his family's rooms on the 5th floor of Cyber City refugee camp. He lives here with his wife and children along with close to 500 more Syrian refugees.

For the past year and a half Abed, his wife and their four children have lived between two small rooms in this run-down, re-purposed office block.

Like most Syrian refugees, Abed’s story is a tragic one. Sitting in his family’s 3m x 5m room he pours tea from an ornate silver pot and then lights up a cigarette and slowly exhales a faint plume of smoke into the grey, dismal room. He rests his hand on his youngest son Mustafa, who is fast asleep under a heavy fleece blanket  by Abed's side.  A net curtain blows in the gentle breeze from the open but caged window. He stares blankly at the scant remnants of his family’s belongings which are stacked in the corner of their room behind the door at which his eldest son leans against the frame. Their few belongings are mixed with UNHCR issued blankets, cushions, cooking utensils and some provisions. They were unable to take much with them when they finally left their home in Homs.

After sipping some sweet black tea and taking another long draw on his cigarette, Abed talks about his life before the conflict. For many years he owned a grocery store selling fresh fruits and vegetables. He worked long hours, rising early and finishing late. It was tough work but he enjoyed it and it was a successful enough business, enough to provide a home for his family and they were a happy family.

Things changed dramatically on the night of the 30th of December 2011 when Syrian government soldiers forcibly entered Abed’s home and ordered him and his family out into the street. In an unprovoked attack, soldiers brutally beat Abed in front of his distraught children; severely injuring him and leaving him unconscious. Thinking he was dead, the soldiers went in search of gasoline in order to burn his lifeless body- At the time Baba Amr had been under siege for nearly a year. Food and fuel supplies to the area were almost non-existent and what fuel supplies had been there at the start of the siege had long since been exhausted.  So the soldiers left. Miraculously Abed regained consciousness and survived but was almost completely incapacitated for 2 weeks. To this day he is still disabled in his left arm and will likely never regain full function.

 

In January of 2012 whilst Abed was still recovering from the injuries sustained from his attack. Forces began a violent bombardment of Baba Amr. The assault lasted over one month. 

“My children would watch the chaos from our building. They saw people dying. Blood. Bleeding. The sound was horrible. The situation went on like this for over  one month and then the army finally entered the neighbourhood” Abed says calmly as Mustafa begins to stir. (Mustafa lived the first year of his life in war torn Syria. Because the area was cut off from basic supplies, Mustafa was not given the appropriate diet to aid his development. In lieu of milk he was given water with a little sugar. The impact of his malnutrition has led to subsequent health issues.)

In March 2012 Government Forces entered Baba Amr. Civilians were summarily arrested and many of those detained were disappeared. Once again government soldiers forcibly entered Abed’s home and he was arrested for affiliation with the Free Syria Army (FSA). He was held for a short time until the FSA negotiated with government forces and Hezbollah militants connected with the regime, for the reciprocal release of prisoners.

“Two to three people were dying each day in prison”  Abed saysMy family were sure that I had been killed but just over a week after being arrested I went home to them”.

The risk of being arrested again was high; Almost certain. So Abed made the decision to move the family from Baba Amr and they headed to Aleppo - which at the time was considered much safer than Homs - His family of 8 along with 11 other people, including a neighbour and his son, managed to find a bus and driver to transport them out of the city.

Just 10km from the outskirts of Homs the bus came under heavy gunfire. And they were forced to return to the city. Tragically during the ensuing assault Abed's eldest son, Yaheer (12) and middle son Bilal (7) were killed. Relaying the events Abed’s voice shows little emotion almost as though his grief is still too far beyond his ability to comprehend. he pulls his mobile phone from his pocket and shows photographs of the lifeless bodies of his two children. Their small bodies wrapped in clear plastic during the preparations for their burial. His hand wavers slightly.

At first glance Murad is much like any average young man. He sits with his cousin laughing and joking. occasionally looking at messages on his mobile phone. He shifts awkwardly in his chair and winces at the sharp burst of pain in the upper part of his left leg (which is amputated above the knee.) He is one of the first arrivals of the day at the fortnightly Handicap International orthosis and prosthesis clinic in Zaatari camp.

Within a short time the sheltered waiting area fills out with scores of Syrians who have suffered horrific injuries as a result of the war, others arrive with pre-existing conditions, or degenerative physical ailments.

Murad suffered severe injuries to his left leg - resulting in amputation above the knee- in late 2013 during a bomb blast in his neighbourhood In Daraa. As a result of the attack one person was killed, 2 (Including Murad) suffered severe injuries to their legs and 7 others sustained minor injuries. Murad spent 2 days at a small hospital before being transported across the border to Jordan. 

Once in Jordan Murad was admitted to Al-Yarmouk hospital in Irbid where he spent three weeks. During this time he underwent extensive surgery to treat his wounds. After his initial recovery he was transferred to Zaatari refugee camp where he has lived and undergone the long and difficult process of physical rehabilitation.

Murad's mother and father are still living in Daraa as they are too unwell to travel for the time needed to get to the border.

Murad waits for his prosthesis specialist to fit his artificial leg during a fitting session at a Handicap International clinic in Zaatari camp.

It is estimated that close to 6% of Syrian refugees living in Jordan and Lebanon have suffered life altering injuries as a result of the war (almost 85,000 individuals from the overall displaced population.) 1 in 4 of those injured will face permanent disability.

Murad undergoes regular physiotherapy sessions to learn to walk properly with his prosthesis.

14 year old Dergham quietly sits on a hospital bed with his legs swinging below him. His sturdy shoes belying the horrific injuries he has sustained to his feet. Moments earlier he had limped shyly into the clinic. He glances out of the small window of the prefab building in the Handicap International clinic. The bright March sun beating down on Zaatari camp. The Prosthetics specialist who has made his bi-monthly visit to Zaatari camp promptly begins his consultation.

Dergham was badly injured during shelling of his neighbourhood in Damascus. He had arrived at the scene of an earlier bombing in which one of his cousins had been injured. Whilst Dergham attempted to help his relative to hospital, a second round of shelling began and he was hit by shrapnel from a nearby exploding shell. He was rushed to hospital where he spent two weeks undergoing an number of operations to clean wounds to his feet and legs. After 4 months recovering his family made the decision to send him, on his own, to a safer area of Syria and then he eventually made his way to Jordan to live with his older brother and family

After arriving and registering as a refugee in Jordan he was admitted to Dulil hospital in Zarqa, where he spent 15 days and had 3 operations, 2 to clean his wounds and a further operation to help reconstruct his right foot at the ankle. 

Dergham's parents still live inside Syria taking the difficult decision to remain for the safety of their youngest children as the journey is far too dangerous to risk travel.

Dergham is still in occasional contact through use of Jordanian cellphone networks

Dergham shows his severely damaged feet as he waits for an orthosis cast of his right foot to be made.

Doctor's sketch showing how Dergham's planned orthosis will fit around his damaged foot.

Doctor makes a plaster cast of Dergham's heavily damaged foot.

Qasem, a 10 year old refugee with dwarfism, from Daraa in Syria, laughs at a joke during an orthosis assessment at a Handicap International clinic in Zaatari camp, Mafraq, Jordan. 

In addition to individuals with disabilities caused by war injuries, there are many Syrian refugees that have pre-existing conditions and physical impairments that make mobility in the harsh conditions of Zaatari camp difficult.

17 year old Fatima, a double amputee (right arm below elbow and left leg) - after being injured in a shelling - is fitted for a new prosthetic arm.

Omran, a 21 year old became a double amputee after being severely injured in a bomb blast in Daraa. He attends a prosthetics fitting at a Handicap International clinic in Zaatari Refugee camp in Mafraq, Jordan. In addition to physical rehabilitation Omran undergoes regular psychological counselling sessions and is under close attention after an attempted suicide in January 2014.

Omran's cousin carries one of Omran's prosthetic legs.

Rehabilitation from injuries that effect mobility is difficult in most circumstances, but for Syrian refugees living in the harsh conditions of Jordan's Mafraq region, as well as those displaced within Syria itself and in other neighbouring countries that have insufficient means to support the influx of displaced Syrians, these difficulties are manifold.

Kurdia, a 50 year old Syrian refugee living out-of-camp in Mafraq area undergoes a physiotherapy session for severe back pains at a Handicap International Clinic in Mafraq city centre, Jordan.

Many elderly refugees suffer from degenerative conditions commonly associated with old age, such as Arthritis, rheumatism and other infirmities. Such conditions are exacerbated greatly by living in harsh conditions.

Children play in the laundry area of King Abdullah Garden refugee camp.

29 year old Ahmed comes from the Southern Syrian city of Daraa. He has lived with his wife and two children at King Abdullah Garden refugee camp near Mafraq for the past 2 years. Ahmed's father and 20 year old sister were killed in the conflict and some relatives are still living in Syria – others are living in nearby Zaatari camp in Jordan. 

Ahmed and his family crossed into Jordan via the Tal Shihab crossing point in North west Jordan. The family of 8 used two cars and the journey was long and tough. At points they came under direct fire from government forces. In Tal Shahib there were many people trying to escape to Jordan- almost 2000.

"Members of the Free Syria army met us there and secured us all safe passage out of the country to the Jordanian border." Ahmed says

 None of the family have attempted to return to Syria. Ahmed's youngest daughter Noor was born in a refugee in Jordan.

There are 190 families living in King Abdullah Garden and Ahmed and his family are happy given the difficult situation they are in. but they see the situation deteriorating as the western world and their Arab brothers and sisters become more weary of their plight and offer less and less support.

“The western world need to support the Free Syria Army” he says “It's enough now with Bashar killing our people because the west waste time. The more time he spends in control the more death and destruction there will be” 

“The government forces and Hizzbollah often impersonate Free Syria Army soldiers in order to intercept UN support for their own benefit”

"I hope that the revolution ends soon because not only are the Syrian people suffering bu the Jordanians are suffering too. They have a big burden with all the refugees. And we will remember what they did when we return home”

After crossing into Jordan the family spent one month sleeping in a playground in Ramtha before moving to King Abdullah Garden.

The Government Army would force their way into our homes, insult us, force us to leave, There was constant shooting by snipers and many other weapons were used against the people.

“We left Syria at the right time, now we feel safe and Jordan is like our second home”.

"The Government Army would force their way into our homes, insult us, force us to leave, There was constant shooting by snipers and many other weapons were used against the people."

“We left Syria at the right time, now we feel safe and Jordan is like our second home”.

Members of Ahmed's family sit outside their accommodation block.

An accommodation cabin is lifted off of a flatbed on the outskirts of Zaatari refugee camp.

Man looks though the window of an under-construction shop near the main shopping district in Zaatari camp.

An Informal refugee settlement on the Jordan/ Syria border. Home to around 7 Syrian families.

Nooran

Nooran (3) stands inside a tent on an informal refugee settlement along the Jordanian border with Syria. She has lived here with her 5 sisters, mother, father and uncle for the past year. the family live between a tent and a derelict travel agency. there are another 6 families living in the settlement.

Nooran (3), Najad (7) and Anfal (6 months) From Daraa, Syria, sit in the living area of their makeshift shelter inside an abandoned travel agency on the Jordanian border with Syria. They have lived here with their mother, father, uncle and 3 sisters for the past year. Anfal was born a refugee in a nearby hospital.

Bashar (left), 10 years old from Daraa, has lived in Jordan for just over one year. For 6 months he stayed in Zaatari camp but moved to an informal settlement on the Jordanian/ Syrian border. He is one of a family of 11 including his brother Omran (Right) who is 13. 

The family left Syria for Jordan immediately after their home and family business was destroyed during a shelling of their neighbourhood on the 22nd of December 2012.

Of his 8 brothers and sisters only Bashar and an older sister attend formal education.

Bashar wants to be an engineer. Omran would like to be a doctor.

Bashar and his older brother enter their makeshift home in a derelict shop on the Jordan/ Syria border.

Bashar stands inside an abandoned shop which has now become home to himself and his family.

Mother checks in for an appointment at a UNFPA maternity care clinic at Zaatari camp.

There are around 10 - 12 births a day in Zaatari camp, both natural deliveries and c-sections. Up until June 2013 Medecins San Frontiers (MSF) dealt with all births in Zaatari, since their cessation of operations the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) have taken over responsibilities for deliveries and general pre- natal and post- natal care.

A new mother receives contraceptive advice from a UNFPA doctor in Zaatari camp. There were 258 births in Zaatari between January 1st 2014 and Mid March. (over 600 in total since UNFPA took over responsibility in June 2013)

Art work on the walls of a youth support centre in Zaatari camp.

Many young men living in Zaatari earn money from working as porters for new arrivals to the camp. for a small fee they help transport belongings.

(Left) Sanad, 15 years old from Daraa has lived in Zaatari with 7 other family members for the past 18 months. 

(Right) Mohammed Hussein, 17 years old, from Herak, Daraa, and Abed 14 years old from Ankhel, Daraa.

(Left) Omar, 17 years old from Gasem, Daraa has lived in Zaatari for 1 year.

(Right) Mohammed Ibrahem, 18 years old, from Daraa. has lived in Zaatari refugee camp for 50 days.

Cigarette stall on the Champs-Élysées.

47 year old Aysha is a proud woman. Strong, worldly, and the matriarch of a large family. She was a nurse in Damascus before the outbreak of war. Her husband, Mahmoud was a hospital maintenance worker when he “disappeared” in the early months of the Syrian conflict. Soon after, Aysha moved her family to Hama after fearing for their safety. 

In Hama she worked at a  hospital that received patients from both sides of the conflict. On many occasions Government forces threatened her with arrest if she treated FSA soldiers and likewise FSA soldiers threatened her if she treated government soldiers. She fled Syria because she was put on a police wanted list because they beleived she was assisting the FSA. She knew that being arrested would mean that she would most definitely be killed. So she fled with her family (Including her cousins Aftem and Ayesha and her brothers Rashid and Khalid and their families.) 16 of them in total. They spent 2 weeks travelling by whatever means they could to get to the Jordanian border near Ruwaished. They registered in Rabad and then spent 2 days in Zaatari before leaving to live out-of-camp on the 7th of December 2013.

“At the time it was very cold and snowing. We used wood for fire and with some help from the aid agency ACTED"  ACTED gave the family 60 Jordanian Dinars which they were able to use to build a tent that could accommodate the family of 16. ACTED staff had promised to visit them, but over two months later they have not seen nor heard anything “We feel cheated and ignored by them, they know we are here but now we're alone”

Every 15 days the family travel back to nearby Zaatari camp to pick up a voucher allowance of 9JD per person as well as a provisions box containing basic foodstuffs including Sugar, oil, bread and rice.

“I feel bad for all my family to have to go through this suffering. It's because of me. I would rather that the government had killed me than for my family to go through this... our children have no education now because we cant afford to buy supplies or even the costs to get them to the schools."

Scene outside Aysha's family's tent.

Some of Aysha's family gather inside their tent.

Aysha's son starts a fire in order to boil river water to make it safe to drink.

  Syrian Refugees in Jordan (Ongoing work)   Since the start of the Syrian conflict in March 2011 more than 2.5 million Syrians have been displaced beyond the borders of their homeland, with most seeking refuge in Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon.   So far 596,062** Syrians have registered under refugee status  with the UNHCR in Jordan, and approximately 20% of those registered have been placed in UNHCR designated settlements including Zaatari with 101,402* persons of concern, Cyber City with approximately 500 and King Abdullah Park with in excess of 1000 residents. Almost 80% of the refugee population live in informal camps and settlements in urban and rural areas    (picture) Mother pushes child in pram in Zaatari refugee camp in Northern Jordan.      *   number correct as at 4th May 2014     **    number correct as at 20th May 2014
 Children hitch a ride on the back of a pickup truck leaving Zaatari refugee camp.
 Barbed wire around UNHCR receiving centre.
 In the 2 years since it accepted its first refugees, Zaatari camp has become the 2nd largest refugee camp in the world, the 6th largest city in Jordan and is home to the world's largest concentration of Syrian refugees. (more than 120,000 within 2 square miles) The camp now operates as a fully functioning society with schools, hospitals, youth centres, and a busy commercial street, named The Champs-Élysées (after the famous Parisian shopping avenue.) by Aid workers.   
 Tanker delivers fresh water to Zaatari camp.  Over one million gallons of water is delivered to to the site every day.     The w  ater is tested for contaminants prior to being transported but not after arrival in camp.   There is a high risk of water becoming contaminated during transportation from source. 
 Children play in front of large freshwater tank, one of almost 500 situated in Zaatari. 
 Families gather in a communal area outside Cyber City refugee camp's accommodation block.   Cyber City camp is a seven storey accommodation block at the back-end of a dusty industrial complex near the town of   Ramtha in Jordan's arid, desolate Irbid Governorate. It is home to approximately 500 refugees, many of whom are already refugees from Palestine.
  Until 2 years ago, Om, 41 years from Daraa, lived with her family in a hotspot of fighting. Government forces would enter homes and beat, kidnap and kill civilians. Om has lived in Cyber City refugee camp since arriving in Jordan in 2012.     They made two attempts to flee Syria, the first attempt was abandoned after they came under gunfire from Syrian government forces. They took shelter with a family and received protection from the Free Syria Army. They eventually made a second attempt to cross into Jordan with the FSA securing their path to the border near Tel Shab.     Om lives in Cyber city with 9 other family members, with two children having been born since they arrived.
  Abed walks, head down, along a cold marble-tiled hallway and comes to a stop, slipping off his sandals at a UNHCR emblazoned blanket hanging from a strip of wire in front of one of his family's rooms on the 5th floor of Cyber City refugee camp.   He lives here with his wife and children along with close to 500 more Syrian refugees.     For the past year and a half Abed, his wife and their four children have lived between two small rooms in this run-down, re-purposed office block.     Like most Syrian refugees, Abed’s story is a tragic one. Sitting in his family’s 3m x 5m room he pours tea from an ornate silver pot and then lights up a cigarette and slowly exhales a faint plume of smoke into the grey, dismal room. He rests his hand on his youngest son Mustafa, who is fast asleep under a heavy fleece blanket  by Abed's side.  A net curtain blows in the gentle breeze from the open but caged window. He stares blankly at the scant remnants of his family’s belongings which are stacked in the corner of their room behind the door at which his eldest son leans against the frame. Their few belongings are mixed with UNHCR issued blankets, cushions, cooking utensils and some provisions. They were unable to take much with them when they finally left their home in Homs.
  After sipping some sweet black tea and taking another long draw on his cigarette, Abed talks about his life before the conflict. For many years he owned a grocery store selling fresh fruits and vegetables. He worked long hours, rising early and finishing late. It was tough work but he enjoyed it and it was a successful enough business, enough to provide a home for his family and they were a happy family.    Things changed dramatically on the night of the   30th of December 2011 when Syrian government soldiers forcibly entered Abed’s home and ordered him and his family out into the street. In an unprovoked attack, soldiers brutally beat Abed in front of his distraught children; severely injuring him and leaving him unconscious. Thinking he was dead, the soldiers went in search of gasoline in order to burn his lifeless body- At the time Baba Amr had been under siege for nearly a year. Food and fuel supplies to the area were almost non-existent and what fuel supplies had been there at the start of the siege had long since been exhausted.  So the soldiers left. Miraculously Abed regained consciousness and survived but was almost completely incapacitated for 2 weeks. To this day he is still disabled in his left arm and will likely never regain full function.    
  In January of 2012 whilst Abed was still recovering from the injuries sustained from his attack. Forces began a violent bombardment of Baba Amr. The assault lasted over one month.       “My children would watch the chaos from our building. They saw people dying. Blood. Bleeding. The sound was horrible. The situation went on like this for over  one month and then the army finally entered the neighbourhood”           Abed says calmly as Mustafa begins to stir. ( Mustafa lived the first year of his life in war torn Syria. Because the area was cut off from basic supplies, Mustafa was not given the appropriate diet to aid his development. In lieu of milk he was given water with a little sugar. The impact of his malnutrition has led to subsequent health issues.)   In March 2012 Government Forces entered Baba Amr. Civilians were summarily arrested and many of those detained were disappeared. Once again government soldiers forcibly entered Abed’s home and he was arrested for affiliation with the Free Syria Army (FSA). He was held for a short time until the FSA negotiated with government forces and Hezbollah militants connected with the regime, for the reciprocal release of prisoners.
    “Two to three people were dying each day in prison”      Abed says     “      My family were sure that I had been killed but just over a week after being arrested I went home to them”.       The risk of being arrested again was high; Almost certain. So Abed made the decision to move the family from Baba Amr and they headed to Aleppo - which at the time was considered much safer than Homs - His family of 8 along with 11 other people, including a neighbour and his son, managed to find a bus and driver to transport them out of the city.
  Just 10km from the outskirts of Homs the bus came under heavy gunfire. And they were forced to return to the city. Tragically during the ensuing assault Abed's eldest son, Yaheer (12) and middle son Bilal (7) were killed. Relaying the events Abed’s voice shows little emotion almost as though his grief is still too far beyond his ability to comprehend. he pulls his mobile phone from his pocket and shows photographs of the lifeless bodies of his two children. Their small bodies wrapped in clear plastic during the preparations for their burial. His hand wavers slightly.
  At first glance Murad is much like any average young man. He sits with his cousin laughing and joking. occasionally looking at messages on his mobile phone. He shifts awkwardly in his chair and winces at the sharp burst of pain in the upper part of his left leg (which is amputated above the knee.) He is one of the first arrivals of the day at the fortnightly Handicap International orthosis and prosthesis clinic in Zaatari camp.    Within a short time the sheltered waiting area fills out with scores of Syrians who have suffered horrific injuries as a result of the war, others arrive with pre-existing conditions, or degenerative physical ailments.    Murad suffered severe injuries to his left leg - resulting in amputation above the knee- in late 2013 during a bomb blast in his neighbourhood In Daraa. As a result of the attack one person was killed, 2 (Including Murad) suffered severe injuries to their legs and 7 others sustained minor injuries. Murad spent 2 days at a small hospital before being transported across the border to Jordan.     Once in Jordan Murad was admitted to Al-Yarmouk hospital in Irbid where he spent three weeks. During this time he underwent extensive surgery to treat his wounds. After his initial recovery he was transferred to Zaatari refugee camp where he has lived and undergone the long and difficult process of physical rehabilitation.    Murad's mother and father are still living in Daraa as they are too unwell to travel for the time needed to get to the border.
  Murad waits for his prosthesis specialist to fit his artificial leg during a fitting session at a Handicap International clinic in Zaatari camp.    It is estimated that close to 6% of Syrian refugees living in Jordan and Lebanon have suffered life altering injuries as a result of the war (almost 85,000 individuals from the overall displaced population.) 1 in 4 of those injured will face permanent disability.
 Murad undergoes regular physiotherapy sessions to learn to walk properly with his prosthesis.
  14 year old Dergham quietly sits on a hospital bed with his legs swinging below him. His sturdy shoes belying the horrific injuries he has sustained to his feet. Moments earlier he had limped shyly into the clinic. He glances out of the small window of the prefab building in the Handicap International clinic. The bright March sun beating down on Zaatari camp. The Prosthetics specialist who has made his bi-monthly visit to Zaatari camp promptly begins his consultation.     Dergham was badly injured during shelling of his neighbourhood in Damascus. He had arrived at the scene of an earlier bombing in which one of his cousins had been injured. Whilst Dergham attempted to help his relative to hospital, a second round of shelling began and he was hit by shrapnel from a nearby exploding shell. He was rushed to hospital where he spent two weeks undergoing an number of operations to clean wounds to his feet and legs. After 4 months recovering his family made the decision to send him, on his own, to a safer area of Syria and then he eventually made his way to Jordan to live with his older brother and family    After arriving and registering as a refugee in Jordan he was admitted to Dulil hospital in Zarqa, where he spent 15 days and had 3 operations, 2 to clean his wounds and a further operation to help reconstruct his right foot at the ankle.     Dergham's parents still live inside Syria taking the difficult decision to remain for the safety of their youngest children as the journey is far too dangerous to risk travel.    Dergham is still in occasional contact through use of Jordanian cellphone networks
 Dergham shows his severely damaged feet as he waits for an orthosis cast of his right foot to be made.
 Doctor's sketch showing how Dergham's planned orthosis will fit around his damaged foot.
 Doctor makes a plaster cast of Dergham's heavily damaged foot.
  Qasem, a 10 year old refugee with dwarfism, from Daraa in Syria, laughs at a joke during an orthosis assessment at a Handicap International clinic in Zaatari camp, Mafraq, Jordan.    In addition to individuals with disabilities caused by war injuries, there are many Syrian refugees that have pre-existing conditions and physical impairments that make mobility in the harsh conditions of Zaatari camp difficult.
  17 year old Fatima, a double amputee (right arm below elbow and left leg) - after being injured in a shelling - is fitted for a new prosthetic arm.
  Omran, a 21 year old became a double amputee after being severely injured in a bomb blast in Daraa. He attends a prosthetics fitting at a Handicap International clinic in Zaatari Refugee camp in Mafraq, Jordan. In addition to physical rehabilitation Omran undergoes regular psychological counselling sessions and is under close attention after an attempted suicide in January 2014.
 Omran's cousin carries one of Omran's prosthetic legs.
  Rehabilitation from injuries that effect mobility is difficult in most circumstances, but for Syrian refugees living in the harsh conditions of Jordan's Mafraq region, as well as those displaced within Syria itself and in other neighbouring countries that have insufficient means to support the influx of displaced Syrians, these difficulties are manifold.
  Kurdia, a 50 year old Syrian refugee living out-of-camp in Mafraq area undergoes a physiotherapy session for severe back pains at a Handicap International Clinic in Mafraq city centre, Jordan.    Many elderly refugees suffer from degenerative conditions commonly associated with old age, such as Arthritis, rheumatism and other infirmities. Such conditions are exacerbated greatly by living in harsh conditions.
 Children play in the laundry area of King Abdullah Garden refugee camp.
  29 year old Ahmed comes from the Southern Syrian city of Daraa. He has lived with his wife and two children at King Abdullah Garden refugee camp near Mafraq for the past 2 years. Ahmed's father and 20 year old sister were killed in the conflict and some relatives are still living in Syria – others are living in nearby Zaatari camp in Jordan.     Ahmed and his family crossed into Jordan via the Tal Shihab crossing point in North west Jordan. The family of 8 used two cars and the journey was long and tough. At points they came under direct fire from government forces. In Tal Shahib there were many people trying to escape to Jordan- almost 2000.       "Members of the Free Syria army met us there and secured us all safe passage out of the country to the Jordanian border."   Ahmed says         None of the family have attempted to return to Syria. Ahmed's youngest daughter Noor was born in a refugee in Jordan.    There are 190 families living in King Abdullah Garden and Ahmed and his family are happy given the difficult situation they are in. but they see the situation deteriorating as the western world and their Arab brothers and sisters become more weary of their plight and offer less and less support.      “The western world need to support the Free Syria Army”   he says   “It's enough now with Bashar killing our people because the west waste time. The more time he spends in control the more death and destruction there will be”   
    “The government forces and Hizzbollah often impersonate Free Syria Army soldiers in order to intercept UN support for their own benefit”        "I hope that the revolution ends soon because not only are the Syrian people suffering bu the Jordanians are suffering too. They have a big burden with all the refugees. And we will remember what they did when we return home”      After crossing into Jordan the family spent one month sleeping in a playground in Ramtha before moving to King Abdullah Garden.    The Government Army would force their way into our homes, insult us, force us to leave, There was constant shooting by snipers and many other weapons were used against the people.      “We left Syria at the right time, now we feel safe and Jordan is like our second home”.
    "The Government Army would force their way into our homes, insult us, force us to leave, There was constant shooting by snipers and many other weapons were used against the people."        “We left Syria at the right time, now we feel safe and Jordan is like our second home”.
 Members of Ahmed's family sit outside their accommodation block.
 An accommodation cabin is lifted off of a flatbed on the outskirts of Zaatari refugee camp.
 Man looks though the window of an under-construction shop near the main shopping district in Zaatari camp.
 An Informal refugee settlement on the Jordan/ Syria border. Home to around 7 Syrian families.
  Nooran   Nooran (3) stands inside a tent on an informal refugee settlement along the Jordanian border with Syria. She has lived here with her 5 sisters, mother, father and uncle for the past year. the family live between a tent and a derelict travel agency. there are another 6 families living in the settlement.
  Nooran (3), Najad (7) and Anfal (6 months) From Daraa, Syria, sit in the living area of their makeshift shelter inside an abandoned travel agency on the Jordanian border with Syria. They have lived here with their mother, father, uncle and 3 sisters for the past year. Anfal was born a refugee in a nearby hospital.
 Bashar (left), 10 years old from Daraa, has lived in Jordan for just over one year. For 6 months he stayed in Zaatari camp but moved to an informal settlement on the Jordanian/ Syrian border. He is one of a family of 11 including his brother Omran (Right) who is 13.   The family left Syria for Jordan immediately after their home and family business was destroyed during a shelling of their neighbourhood on the 22nd of December 2012.  Of his 8 brothers and sisters only Bashar and an older sister attend formal education.  Bashar wants to be an engineer. Omran would like to be a doctor.
 Bashar and his older brother enter their makeshift home in a derelict shop on the Jordan/ Syria border.
  Bashar stands inside an abandoned shop which has now become home to himself and his family.
 Mother checks in for an appointment at a UNFPA maternity care clinic at Zaatari camp.  There are around 10 - 12 births a day in Zaatari camp, both natural deliveries and c-sections. Up until June 2013 Medecins San Frontiers (MSF) dealt with all births in Zaatari, since their cessation of operations the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) have taken over responsibilities for deliveries and general pre- natal and post- natal care.
 A new mother receives contraceptive advice from a UNFPA doctor in Zaatari camp. There were 258 births in Zaatari between January 1st 2014 and Mid March. (over 600 in total since UNFPA took over responsibility in June 2013)
 Art work on the walls of a youth support centre in Zaatari camp.
 Many young men living in Zaatari earn money from working as porters for new arrivals to the camp. for a small fee they help transport belongings.   (Left)   Sanad, 15 years old from Daraa has lived in Zaatari with 7 other family members for the past 18 months.     (Right)   Mohammed Hussein, 17 years old, from Herak, Daraa, and Abed 14 years old from Ankhel, Daraa.
  (Left)   Omar, 17 years old from Gasem, Daraa has lived in Zaatari for 1 year.     (Right)  Mohammed Ibrahem, 18 years old, from Daraa. has lived in Zaatari refugee camp for 50 days.
 Cigarette stall on the Champs-Élysées.
  47 year old Aysha is a proud woman. Strong, worldly, and the matriarch of a large family. She was a nurse in Damascus before the outbreak of war. Her husband, Mahmoud was a hospital maintenance worker when he “disappeared” in the early months of the Syrian conflict. Soon after, Aysha moved her family to Hama after fearing for their safety.    In Hama she worked at a  hospital that received patients from both sides of the conflict. On many occasions Government forces threatened her with arrest if she treated FSA soldiers and likewise FSA soldiers threatened her if she treated government soldiers. She fled Syria because she was put on a police wanted list because they beleived she was assisting the FSA. She knew that being arrested would mean that she would most definitely be killed. So she fled with her family (Including her cousins Aftem and Ayesha and her brothers Rashid and Khalid and their families.) 16 of them in total. They spent 2 weeks travelling by whatever means they could to get to the Jordanian border near Ruwaished. They registered in Rabad and then spent 2 days in Zaatari before leaving to live out-of-camp on the 7th of December 2013.    “At the time it was very cold and snowing. We used wood for fire and with some help from the aid agency ACTED"    ACTED gave the family 60 Jordanian Dinars which they were able to use to build a tent that could accommodate the family of 16. ACTED staff had promised to visit them, but over two months later they have not seen nor heard anything   “We feel cheated and ignored by them, they know we are here but now we're alone”    Every 15 days the family travel back to nearby Zaatari camp to pick up a voucher allowance of 9JD per person as well as a provisions box containing basic foodstuffs including Sugar, oil, bread and rice.    “I feel bad for all my family to have to go through this suffering. It's because of me. I would rather that the government had killed me than for my family to go through this... our children have no education now because we cant afford to buy supplies or even the costs to get them to the schools."
  Scene outside Aysha's family's tent.
  Some of Aysha's family gather inside their tent.
 Aysha's son starts a fire in order to boil river water to make it safe to drink.