The orphans of Syria's war

Displaced widows and children of Syria's war struggle for survival in Hatay, Turkey.

Safiyyah Patel , Nabila Bana | | Humanitarian crises, Middle East, Syrian Refugees, Turkey

Hatay, Turkey - As Syria's civil war continues into its sixth year with no end in sight, more than 2.7 million Syrians have fled the violence in their home towns and crossed the border into Turkey. While some find themselves in refugee camps, others have moved across into pockets of Turkey.

Jabal, an impoverished neighbourhood in the southernmost Turkish province of Hatay, is one such pocket. This neighbourhood, 40km away from the Turkish/Syrian border, is now home to hundreds of widows and orphans who are trying to reconcile the loss of land and loved ones in Syria.

Most refugee families have arrived in Turkey with few possessions and have few prospects of earning a livelihood within Turkey. The Turkish government has made attempts to address the influx of refugees outside refugee camps by providing free basic services such as medical care and schooling.

However, for displaced widows and children, often living in derelict accommodation with no source of income and fast approaching the end of their life savings, the daily fight for survival is real.

*names of the children have been changed

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