Saturday April 27, 2024

The recent escalation in Violence in Gaza has caused widespread destruction and forced over 1.9 million Palestinians from their homes, including 10-year-old Mariam, whose life is filled with ongoing struggles and challenges since October 7, 2023. She explains her circumstances and the distressing experiences she and her family are enduring during the violence and devastation in Gaza.

Mariam has recently been registered and sponsored by Islamic Relief’s Orphan Sponsorship Programme. At her young age, she has experienced and witnessed so much in the past few months.


I feel like I’ve aged years beyond my actual age,” Mariam discloses. “My family and I are living through the worst days of fear, terror, insecurity, cold, hunger, and thirst. We never imagined we would experience such days. We have been deprived of our entire childhood and our right to live a safe life.”


Mariam’s family includes her mother, Hanaa, and her siblings, Mohammed, Abdulhay, and Mahmoud. Since the recent escalation over six months ago, they have been together, navigating the landscape of ongoing violence and uncertainty, where every day brings new challenges and dangers.

Hanaa recounts the horrors they’ve endured, from narrowly escaping missile strikes to seeking refuge in overcrowded shelters.


We stayed in our house until November 18, 2023,” she recalls. “We were sleeping in Allah’s protection when suddenly a missile fell into our living room. Thankfully, it did not explode.”


They were ordered to evacuate and forced to flee with nothing but the clothes on their backs, exposed to a dangerous and exposed journey in search of safety. “We walked from Gaza’s north to its south,” Hanaa recounts. “We had no blankets or warm clothes to shield us from the cold, and we didn’t have money to buy anything from the markets.

Their struggles are worsened by their inability to access food, clean water, and medical supplies. “We survived on lentil soup for two months,” Hanaa explains. “My children contracted viral hepatitis, and we struggled to afford medication and basic necessities.

Despite the overwhelming hardships, Mariam and her family find comfort in the support she receives from the Orphan Sponsorship Programme. “When I received notification that my child would receive sponsorship, I cried tears of joy,

Hanaa shares.


I bought blankets, food, and a coat for Mariam, who was very sick and needed warmth.”


For Mariam, the sponsorship serves as a lifeline for her in a time of great uncertainty. “I was so happy with the new coat,” she says. “I quickly put it on and prayed fervently to Allah to reward the sponsor because he didn’t forget us in these difficult circumstances.” Mariam will benefit fully from the sponsorship programme and receive full support for her education and medical care when everything returns to normal. Right now, she lives in a refugee camp, facing difficulties with her family and so many other families.

Mariam’s story is just one among thousands in Gaza who face the same overwhelming hardships. The ongoing crisis has already claimed the lives of thousands of Palestinians, including 15,000 children. The need for urgent humanitarian aid has never been greater.

As Mariam’s words echo across the war-torn streets of Gaza, they serve as a reminder of what they endure in the face of unimaginable adversity. Mariam is grateful for the support, as her family benefits from her being part of the sponsorship programme. The objective of this programme is to give orphaned children hope for a brighter future amid the darkness of conflict and despair.

Islamic Relief is grateful for the support received from donors. With your support, we have been funding over 8,000 orphans in Gaza. Continue supporting our initiatives and assist an orphaned child in need.

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