July 10, 2010

Iraqi FlagOur first family is a family of four with two children, both boys, ages 3 years and 8 months. They will have been in Phoenix 2 months as of July 12. They moved to the US from Syria, where they have spent the last 4 years. The couple was forced to leave Iraq because they have a “mixed” marriage. Both are muslum but he is Shiite and she is Sunni. They are from Basra in southern Iraq, a mostly Shiite area, and they felt their lives were in danger because the mother is Sunni. The father is 32 and has a Masters degree in Computer Engineering. He was a professor in both Iraq and Syria. The mother is 25 and was studying the same thing but was unable to finish her degree. They had to leave Syria because the Syrians believe if one Iraqi causes problems, all Iraqis cause problems; they did not feel safe staying. Their most urgent needs are for their children. They need a crib, a high chair, and car seats. The father is already working to be a part of the community. He had collected clothes from his apartment complex to donate to WTAP. He already has books to study as he wants to get his PhD.

Iraqi FlagOur second family is a family of six. Two adults and 4 children, boys ages 17, 15 and 8 and a girl age 11. They have been here 2 1/2 months. They lived in Bagdad and moved to Turkey 1 1/2 years ago. The mother’s family was killed in Iraq, her cousin worked for the US embassy. Many of her family members were sitting in the same car with her cousin and all of them were killed, shot to death. The father worked for a Spanish company that sold agriculture and farming equipment, he too was shot. This family has had a very traumatic experience and are grateful to be here. The 6 of them are in a very small apartment, they have many needs but not much room. The 15-year-old son speaks some English, the rest are trying to learn. They asked for books of any kind, children’s books would be good for learning to read English, they wouldalso like a dictionary. Their #1 request is for a computer for their children.

Iraqi FlagOur third family has been here just 18 days. They are a young couple, married two years with a 14-month-old son. They have spent the past 2 years in Egypt. The mother’s family is here, in the same apartment complex. The mother and her sister were both almost kidnapped because their father worked for the US government in Iraq. This family needs everything, as the IRC (International Refugee Committee) has already helped to resettle the parents of this couple they are not able to contribute to this new family. WTAP does not usually donate beds because IRC supplies them but in this case they need a bed, at least a double or queen. They also need a crib and a high chair for their baby.

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