Homes for Families in Syria
Help Build Homes for internally displaced families inside Syria!
Nearly 3 million people are displaced in Syria. They are living on the dirt in crowded camps in tents. These tents are designed to last one year, and yet they’ve been in use for 3 or 4 or more years and are often in tatters or patched and repaired beyond recognition. They are cold in winter and sweltering in summer. A tent flap does not provide a single mother with children any security in an increasingly desperate situation. At least a third of these tent homes are headed by single women with children who make up half the population.
These families are often caring for elderly parents or relatives as well. Just last month, strong storms blew through camps and tore them up out of the ground. Torrential rains flood these tents and all who are trying to live in them. It’s an unfair and miserable situation.Mercy-USA will be providing new tiny homes to families that feature a small kitchen, bathroom, sleeping area and a door that locks. These homes will be raised off the ground to provide warmth and safety from the floods that wash away tents every year. Having their own private bathroom will help restore some dignity to families who have been suffering for so many years.
All four of Om Sobhi’s children were born in a tent, (see above). She and her husband were displaced from their home and farm six years ago and have been trying to survive in a tent that grew more and more tattered with each year. (These tents were designed to last one year.) She cooked outdoors on an open fire year-round. In summer, the heat was stifling since keeping the tent flaps open meant disease-carrying sand flies and other pests would plague them through the night. In winter, the drafty tent did not keep them warm. Winter floods often meant all their bedding got drenched as mud and water poured in. When her husband found day labor (earning just a $1.50 a day), Om Sobhi and the children were vulnerable to anyone who wished to enter their tent home.
Now, their new shelter is raised above the ground, it’s insulated from cold and heat, there is a kitchen, sleeping/living room and private bathroom. The children can play, study and be safe at home! She told us, “It’s a hundred times better than a tent; it’s cleaner and it will be warmer in the winter. The windows and doors don’t allow the wind or cold in. Also, its secure! We can lock it down.”
🏠 Features of these innovative homes:
Durability: 10-15 years of hard use
Full insulation from cold and heat
The structures are waterproof
High privacy and sound isolation
Easy to repair or improve.
Mercy-USA will provide needed accommodations for persons with disability or mobility issues.
Will be installed above ground to avoid flooding that has plagued the camps for years.
Each home will cost $5,500 to complete. We need to raise enough funds to transform entire camps to avoid creating tension and disparity among neighbors.
🌱 Environmental Impact
Mercy-USA recognizes that it is crucial that we take steps to mitigate the effects of climate change in all that we do to help people. This project, like all our projects, will be implemented in ways to reduce our carbon footprint and empower the communities we serve with the knowledge and resources to respond to climate change. The materials used in these shelters are 95% recyclable, and more importantly, these shelters are designed to last 10-15 years, compared to tents and their poly sheeting that have a lifetime of one to two years in the elements.
The wastewater management system we install will allow for water to be reused for hard irrigation (trees). This is an important tool as it saves large amounts of water and directs it towards agricultural/irrigation purposes.
💡This is a pilot innovative shelter approach which will be more dignified for families compared to tents.
We must provide these semi-permanent homes to entire camps at one time so not to create tension and disparity.