Sara was just a toddler when war broke out in Syria in 2011. She was born into a happy family in Aleppo, but because of the war her parents lost their jobs. For 18 months they tried to struggle on in Aleppo, but food shortages and bitter attacks were taking their toll. Each night the bombs grew closer and closer. It was all very hard for three-year-old Sara to understand.
She was in their home when the bomb hit.
With no choice but to flee, Sara’s mother hid her and her brother in a covered shopping trolley – as they ran, bullets whistled past them from snipers who had taken up residence in buildings all over town. Dead bodies littered the streets. They had no idea if they would make it out alive – they just knew their only chance was to run.
Against all odds, Sara and her family reached Turkey. It’s impossible to know how this kind of experience affects a toddler. This picture that Sara drew is just an insight into the anguish that such experiences would cause.
Thankfully, in Turkey Sara and her family became one of the first Syrian families to be offered refuge by the UK government.
Sara is now nine years old and is so grateful to be here, away from the explosions and suffocating atmosphere of fear. She drew this picture of herself with her mum and dad, now that she is feeling safe and happy.
But although Sara’s family are safe, they are struggling to come to terms with all they have seen and suffered: they need much more of our help. Sara urgently needs therapy, English lessons and support as she continues school and tries to build a future here.
With your help, we can make sure refugee children like Sara get the care they need.