Honoring the Brave Heroes Saving Lives in Syria

By Serena Jiwani

March 15, 2017

Today, the conflict in Syria enters its 7th year.

The past six years of war in Syria have led to almost 5 million people fleeing from their country, and some estimates say that nearly 500,000 people have died. UNICEF has called the conflict a period of unprecedented suffering for children in Syria – rather than grow up in a safe neighborhood with a chance to get a good education, children are plagued by toxic stress and stepping in the wrong place in public parks can cause explosions.

When the bombs rain down, the Syrian Civil Defence rushes in. In a place where public services no longer function these unarmed volunteers risk their lives to help anyone in need - regardless of their religion or politics.Every day, more than 50 bombs land on neighborhoods throughout the country. Because of this, cities such as Aleppo that used to be thriving cultural centers are now completely destroyed.

In the middle of the conflict in Syria, many groups are working hard to save lives every day. One group is particularly focused on the front lines of care – the White Helmets.

The White Helmets are groups of unarmed men and women who are the first responders on the scene when a bomb or airstrike hits. They work for hours to pull people out of rubble and put themselves in harm’s way to save the lives of those from their communities and neighborhoods. To date, the White Helmets have saved nearly 80,000 people, including the miracle baby who survived despite all odds stacked against him.

Recently featured in an Oscars-nominated documentary, the White Helmets live by the motto “to save a life is to save all of humanity.” Learn more about these brave heroes who are saving children and families in Syria every day.

Header photo courtesy of The White Helmets/Al Jazeera 

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