March 28, 2017
How to humanise the refugee crisis that has seen a record 65.3 million people displaced? World Vision CEO Chris Clarke did so by portraying the tale of 12 year old Syrian refugee Adel, who he met in a makeshift Lebanon refugee camp with his widowed mother and five younger sisters.
At 12, he was digging potatoes for 12 hours a day to pay back the farmer for the pocket handkerchief of land they had built their leaking plywood and plastic shelter on. When they met, he had 75 more days to clear the debt. His sisters were suffering post-traumatic stress disorder. Nightmares of gun toting soldiers they had seen back home had one sister often run from their paltry shelter in the middle of the night, screaming and terrified. It was Adel who had to chase after her, bring her back, comfort her till she could sleep again.