on-going civil war since 2011
total population 17.9 million (2021)
6.6 million are refugees
more than half the refugees are women and children
10 years of conflict in Syria has created the worst humanitarian crisis of this century so far, with women and children accounting for more than half of all refugees.
Tens of thousands of women are now the sole provider for their children. Many have left or lost most of their relatives in other parts of the country. Now, as refugees, they carry not only the burden of raising their children through an on-going crisis but also managing their own emotional trauma as well.
So, I'm wanting to use art as a form of creative therapy to help reignite hope and bring encouragement to those who so desperately need it in Syria.
To do this, I’ve created a brand new Tear Garden poem and painting, based on my original artwork from 2 years ago. Here is my original painting and the new Arabic version.
Our partners in Lebanon have translated the poem into Arabic along with Psalm 56:8 which reads, 'You have collected all my tears in your bottle'. I was very careful to make the image culturally appropriate and faith neutral to ensure it can be used anywhere in the Middle East without causing offence.
A number of Syrian women have already seen it and been really blessed, so I hope to share their testimonies with you in another update soon.
This is our first step towards launching our Planted for Purpose Trauma Healing and Reconciliation course in Syria. The course workbooks will need to be translated into Arabic, so that will be the next phase of this project.