As I tucked my 7-year-old son into bed, he asked me a question.
“Who are the most hated people?”
I’d just given him a scenario: “If you had two airplane tickets that you could give to anyone in the world, who would you give them to?” Living in Florida, I was expecting him to say he’d give his tickets to his two cousins in Tennessee.
His response threw me. “Who are the most hated people?” he asked. I fumbled around for an answer, saying that there are many people who are hated overseas.
“I’d give my tickets to them.” he said, “Imagine how they must feel.”
Walking downstairs I couldn’t help but think about the refugee crisis. I’d just read an article about the Yazidi refugees fleeing Iraq. In the article, Mark Gaither with Global Aid Network explains this group’s plight. The Yazidis, hated by both “Christians” and “Muslims” for their syncretic belief system, meet my son’s criteria.
In 2014, around 200,000 Yazidis were displaced by ISIS and 50,000 fled to the Sinjar Mountains where they faced massacre. In 2015, the same week as the Paris attacks, Kurdish forces found mass graves in the town of Sinjar. All told, United Nations confirms that 5,000 men have been executed and 7,000 women and children captured.
“As of now, the Yazidis are caught in limbo – no home to return to, and no one to take them in,” Mark said.
Cru staff and the church in Turkey requested aid for the Yazidis, and GAiN was able to respond with a host of immediate needs.
Through partnerships in the Middle East, GAiN gives vital aid to refugees in Iraq, Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon. Christian Arabs facilitate distribution.
In a six-month period in 2015, GAiN provided:
- Meals for 267,360 refugees
- Housing – 36 tents and 4,120 tarps – to shelter the homeless
- Blankets to keep 3,000 people warm
- Clothing for 8,074 people and shoes for 3,951 people who had none
- Mobility for the disabled with 202 wheelchairs, 173 walkers, 21 PET® carts, 209 pairs of crutches, and 57 walking canes
My 7-year-old would approve.