By Dr Khalil Abdul Kareem, Manager, AMAR ICF Clinic, Khanke Camp, Iraq.

Iraqis Prepare for Another War. This Time it’s Covid-19

Life is so unfair. Just when you think a displaced person’s world can’t get any worse here in northern Iraq, along comes a virus that threatens to be the biggest disaster of all.

For almost six years, hundreds of thousands of Yazidi men, women and children have lived a truly miserable life.

First the monsters of Daesh (ISIS) attacked their towns and villages. Thousands were killed and thousands more women and girls were kidnapped, raped and sold as slaves. The rest managed to escape. But they left behind their homes, their precious possessions, their jobs. Their lives changed beyond recognition for ever.

Since then, the majority have been forced to live in the sprawling displacement camps. For years now they have slept under canvas, on hard concrete floors. Sanitation is basic. This part of Iraq is dreadfully cold in winter and insanely hot in summer – it is sometimes more than 50c!

It is the perfect breeding ground for sickness. Now we are faced with COVID-19. In an environment like this, it will spread like wildfire unless we take every possible precaution. It is a race against time.

Here in Khanke Camp, on the outskirts of the city of Dohuk, we have been working non-stop.

Khanke is home to more than 15000 people, and there are almost double that amount of people living as IDPs around the perimeters. I manage the only health centre here, which is run by the UK-based charity The AMAR International Charitable Foundation (www.amarfoundation.org)

We have a small staff of locally trained medical professionals – doctors, nurses, lab technicians and pharmacists – and around 25 women health volunteers (WHVs).

For the last week we have all been working non-stop to try educate the entire camp about how to keep COVID-19 at bay. The place is already over-crowded and there can be as many as 10 people sharing just one tent.

All our teams are out from first light, visiting people and giving them as much information as we possibly can. The biggest message is of course to wash your hands for at least 20 seconds. Something that is very easy to do when you have access to a proper bathroom and running water, but not so easy here.

But people are scared, so they are really getting the message. They understand the need to distance and to stay away from others as much as they can.

Our clinic is staying open six days a week, and we get up to 200 patients a day. Gastric infections are commonplace of course, as is flu, hypertension, chronic anxiety and depression.

Now every patient is given a lesson in how to keep themselves safe from COVID-19. Everyone knows it’s a threat. They all see it on the news, so they are eager to find out any way they can to protect themselves.

My staff too – like medics around the world – are frightened they could be the first to develop the symptoms. They all have families. Most are the sole providers. If they get sick, what will happen they ask me.

We all take every possible precaution. But access to PPE is limited. The Dohuk Health Directorate supply us, but they have limited stocks of masks, gowns, gloves.  Certainly nowhere near enough to supply the population of the entire camp. We need outside help and support. Right now.

We have done what we can. The rest is up to god. We pray COVID-19 will not make it here.

SUPPORT AMAR ICF VIA VIRGIN MONEY HERE

or

PLEASE FIND THE DONATION FORM HERE

COVID-19 is spreading rapidly across the world. Governments of even the wealthiest countries are struggling to cope with the scale of the Pandemic. For Iraq this is nothing short of disaster. Iraq’s health care system is in almost permanent crisis, constantly on the brink of collapse.

Only days ago, its Health Minister, Jafar Allawi, was seen on television pleading to Ayatollah Ali Al-Sistani, the spiritual leader of Iraq’s Shia Muslims, for help. His government had failed to agree to Allawi’s plea for emergency funding to cope with the Corona crisis.

Iraq is a country devastated by decades of war, internecine conflict, dictatorship, corruption and poverty, and now its beleaguered staff and broken infrastructure is being asked to deal with one of the most virulent viruses the world has ever known.

The hundreds of thousands of Yazidi IDPs living in the sprawling camps in the north are particularly at risk. AMAR field teams are doing all they can to limit the spread by dispensing much needed advice and support to those most in need.

For the last 27 years, AMAR has been at the forefront of efforts to support and enhance the Iraqi health care system. We have built, refurbished and run more than 75 health care centres, our medical professionals have carried out almost 11 million consultations, and our teams have been caring for and supporting hundreds of thousands of Yazidi IDPs since the ISIS invasion of 2014.

To continue to do this we need your support. Without our amazing donors we could not have achieved so much for more than a quarter of a century. Today, with COVID-19 the very latest threat to the lives and livelihoods of the poor Iraqi people, we need your help more than ever.

ALL THE WAYS YOU CAN DONATE DONATE BY CHEQUE DONATE BY UK CREDIT OR DEBIT CARD

Search for us on Virgin money giving under AMAR International Charitable Foundation or go to our website www.amarfoundation.org

We are delighted to add that the appeal is being backed by the Joss Stone Foundation (@JossStone) which aims to raise awareness and support for more than 200 charities globally. Thank you so much Joss!

SUPPORT AMAR ICF VIA VIRGIN MONEY HERE

or

PLEASE FIND THE DONATION FORM HERE

(Source: IBBC)

COVID-19 is spreading rapidly across the world. Governments of even the wealthiest countries are struggling to cope with the scale of the Pandemic. For Iraq this is nothing short of disaster. Iraq’s health care system is in almost permanent crisis, constantly on the brink of collapse.

Only days ago, its Health Minister, Jafar Allawi, was seen on television pleading to Ayatollah Ali Al-Sistani, the spiritual leader of Iraq’s Shia Muslims, for help. His government had failed to agree to Allawi’s plea for emergency funding to cope with the Corona crisis.

Iraq is a country devastated by decades of war, internecine conflict, dictatorship, corruption and poverty, and now its beleaguered staff and broken infrastructure is being asked to deal with one of the most virulent viruses the world has ever known.

The hundreds of thousands of Yazidi IDPs living in the sprawling camps in the north are particularly at risk. AMAR field teams are doing all they can to limit the spread by dispensing much needed advice and support to those most in need.

For the last 27 years, AMAR has been at the forefront of efforts to support and enhance the Iraqi health care system. We have built, refurbished and run more than 75 health care centres, our medical professionals have carried out almost 11 million consultations, and our teams have been caring for and supporting hundreds of thousands of Yazidi IDPs since the ISIS invasion of 2014.

To continue to do this we need your support. Without our amazing donors we could not have achieved so much for more than a quarter of a century. Today, with COVID-19 the very latest threat to the lives and livelihoods of the poor Iraqi people, we need your help more than ever.

ALL THE WAYS YOU CAN DONATE DONATE BY CHEQUE DONATE BY UK CREDIT OR DEBIT CARD

Search for us on Virgin money giving under AMAR International Charitable Foundation or go to our website www.amarfoundation.org

We are delighted to add that the appeal is being backed by the Joss Stone Foundation (@JossStone) which aims to raise awareness and support for more than 200 charities globally. Thank you so much Joss!

SUPPORT AMAR ICF VIA VIRGIN MONEY HERE

or

PLEASE FIND THE DONATION FORM HERE

(Source: IBBC)

By John Lee.

The AMAR Foundation is working to record, protect and teach the unique music of the Yazidi people in northern Iraq.

Part of the British Council’s Cultural Protection Fund, the project is helping to preserve and sustain this endangered music for future generations of Yazidis.

Developing over a long and complex history, Yazidi music is rich and unique. It is at the heart of the Yazidi faith and is one of the central pillars of community life.

It broadly takes three forms: religious, ceremonial and folk. AMAR is working to ensure that all three continue to exist and thrive among the Yazidi people.

More here

(Source: AMAR)

By John Lee.

The AMAR Foundation is working to record, protect and teach the unique music of the Yazidi people in northern Iraq.

Part of the British Council’s Cultural Protection Fund, the project is helping to preserve and sustain this endangered music for future generations of Yazidis.

Developing over a long and complex history, Yazidi music is rich and unique. It is at the heart of the Yazidi faith and is one of the central pillars of community life.

It broadly takes three forms: religious, ceremonial and folk. AMAR is working to ensure that all three continue to exist and thrive among the Yazidi people.

More here

(Source: AMAR)

By John Lee.

The AMAR Foundation is working to record, protect and teach the unique music of the Yazidi people in northern Iraq.

Part of the British Council’s Cultural Protection Fund, the project is helping to preserve and sustain this endangered music for future generations of Yazidis.

Developing over a long and complex history, Yazidi music is rich and unique. It is at the heart of the Yazidi faith and is one of the central pillars of community life.

It broadly takes three forms: religious, ceremonial and folk. AMAR is working to ensure that all three continue to exist and thrive among the Yazidi people.

More here

(Source: AMAR)

It’s (almost) Christmas, so please spare a thought for those less fortunate who will have little to celebrate on the 25th.

Please consider the AMAR Foundation‘s appeal this year which highlights the plight of Yazidi teens whose young lives have been ruined by ISIS.

More than one third of the 6,800 Yazidis abducted in Sinjar in 2014 were children under 14, We want to reach as many of these children as possible and help them reclaim their childhoods.

Please click here to help us help them.

(Source: AMAR)

It’s (almost) Christmas, so please spare a thought for those less fortunate who will have little to celebrate on the 25th.

Please consider the AMAR Foundation‘s appeal this year which highlights the plight of Yazidi teens whose young lives have been ruined by ISIS.

More than one third of the 6,800 Yazidis abducted in Sinjar in 2014 were children under 14, We want to reach as many of these children as possible and help them reclaim their childhoods.

Please click here to help us help them.

(Source: AMAR)

By John Lee.

The Iraq Britain Business Council (IBBC) has announced that it has established a Health Sector Table.

This Table will be chaired by Professor David Kerr, Rhodes Professor of Clinical Pharmacology and Cancer Therapeutics, and Head of Department of Clinical Pharmacology at Oxford University.

It is being supported by the Iraqi Minister of Health and the Environment, Dr Ala Alwan, who attended its first meeting.

The Table’s first meeting was held at IBBC’s offices on the morning of Friday 28th June. Its purpose is to allow relevant member organisations to become involved in the further development of the Iraqi health sector.

Healthcare is a priority for IBBC, and the Minister will personally be liaising with this Table. Also present at this meeting were representatives of Almanseer Insurance, Serco, Protechnique, GE Healthcare, Perkins+Will UK, PwC, Management Partners, and The Amar Foundation.

For more information on the Iraq Britain Business Council, visit https://www.iraqbritainbusiness.org/

(Source: IBBC)

Run Media City – the power of words can change lives in Iraq

On the 27th June 2019, Hussein Al-alak and Tracy Hollowood are taking part on the Run Media City 5K, to aid the ongoing work of the AMAR Foundation in Iraq.

This is the second time Hussein and Tracy have taken part on the 5K, around Salford’s Media City, and they are inviting you to support the AMAR Foundation.

Your support will assist AMAR’s efforts in health, education and much more! You can also help by introducing your friends, to the many incredible changes, which the AMAR Foundation are making across Iraq.

One positive change AMAR has made, is the School for Orphans which the Foundation built in Basra in 2016. Up to 30% of the school’s children have lost both parents, the school has modern facilities and it provides a broad curriculum, so children get the best start in life.

You can sponsor Hussein and Tracy – by donating £8.99 to the AMAR Foundation – which is the equivalent of one copy of On the Road, by US author Jack Kerouac.

As Iraqi’s are known for their love of great literature, you could also use John Steinbeck’s words to inspire Iraq’s future generations.

By donating the cost of your favourite book, you will be helping the AMAR Foundation to provide a high standard of education, to children and young people across Iraq.

(Source: Iraq Solidarity News)