So I recently became a freelance writer for Global Seven News and wanted to share my first piece of work with you. Whilst a harboring topic to write about, it was also wholly interesting and thought it deserved a mention on my blog, so here it is below:
The Unheard Voices of Syria’s Children.
In the Western world, we are far from strangers as to what is happening in Syria. Devastated by war and destruction, the country is crying out for help and for salvation. With issues being so widely reported in our international press, we are fully aware of conflict-related goings on. Something however, not so frequently spoken out about is the direct distress inflicted upon Syria’s children and the unfit lives they lead as a subsequent result. It is estimated that there are around 7.5 million youngsters going through their childhood, and thereafter, knowing nothing but war. Hard for one to imagine, the lives that these children live. But it is real, and it is happening today and I believe these children deserve a voice.
Everybody has seen them – the charity appeal adverts, but how many actually absorb what they hear/see? On the TV, the radio, on posters, in magazines, the list goes on. But amongst so many other causes, they often aren’t given much of a second thought. However, if the people of the Western world were more familiar with the unseen distressing effects of war on Syria, and the unheard voices of its undeserving children; then it can only be assumed that more and more people could emphasise with the cause and recognise that this, unfortunately, is all too real and needs to be talked about.
After the issue sparked my interest, I decided to research in to the Syrian Civil War and its knock-on effects of all those inhabiting there – with particular focus to the children, as (as aforementioned) we so rarely hear about them. What I found was shocking to say the least. Articles after articles recounting journalists’ experiences upon travelling to Syria and visiting some of its residents, articles which have accounted some of the most disturbing issues that I have ever come across. More and more children are becoming orphans, with little or no understanding as to why. Some are so war-stricken that they are faced with no other option than to endure life-risking journeys across the sea in the hope of refugee and salvation – with many failing to make the journey. They are living with only the clothes on their backs and little else, having to make arduous journeys to obtain simple necessities you and I would not give a second thought about. Around 50% of children are now no longer able to attend school, subsequently missing out on vital education that will be impactful on them throughout the rest of their lives.
Their stories, nevertheless, are far from over. And their spirit shines on through the darkest of days. Whilst researching the cause, I was also met with many positive, overwhelming stories that resulted in me gaining the upmost admiration for these children. I read accounts of a young girl still finishing her exams with top results, regardless of living as a refugee in Za’atari camp – she is now eligible to continue her studies onwards and upwards through University and create a better life for her and her family. I read about, in spite of the horrific goings on in their country, children articulating the most optimistic and exultant spirits, expressing hopes for a better future – ultimately inspirational to say the very least.
Throughout my research, I have been shocked and saddened, but I’ve also been moved and enthused. The conditions in Syria are nothing short of horrific, yet many still appreciate the little they have and still make the most of every day – and they are happy to have their life if nothing else. This, however, is the thought that unsettles me the most. Why should the most optimistic amongst us have to endure the worst?
Is it such a curious thought…? Why should they deserve any less than, say, me or you do? It’s an undying question and a wholly unanswered one, together we should be looking to work with one and other to help build a better life for these children and their families also. I suppose the best most of us can do is to hope for a better life for these individuals, and hopefully one day, they will get there. Until that day however, we should keep them in our thoughts and hearts and remember to appreciate all we have – as there are so many amongst us in this world whom appreciate much, much less.
Jessica Louise Pardoe.
Global Seven News.