Khalida is a 6 year-old girl who lives in Berseve I, a camp for internally displaced Kurds and Iraqis currently hosting thousands of families.
Khalida was born with a genetic defect which prevents her from walking, potentially due to her parents being related. Thanks to a generous donation from Germany, Khalida has been going to physiotherapy, but the results are limited and her family often cannot afford the cost of transport to the physiotherapy clinic (Dohuk city is about an hour away) .
As IDPs and Yazidis, families like Khalida’s struggle to find work and can’t build a future for their children. Khalida’s family comes from Telcasap, a small village in the Sinjar mountains. The area was taken by ISIS in August 2014 and her family had to escape to survive. Her parents and her three sisters hid in the mountains for a week with no water nor food of any sort. The signs of such traumatic experience are still vivid today; Khalida’s mother has deep scars in her feet from when she had to run for safety bare foot and her husband now suffers from chronic back pain from carrying Khalida and her younger sister on his shoulders during the flight.
Khalida is a smart girl, well-aware of her own disadvantaged situation. She smiles, but her eyes gleam when she looks at the hundreds of other kids that run and play around her in the camp. With the support of L’Association pour l’Aide aux Jeune Infirmes et aux Personnes Handicapées, we were able to cover the cost of orthopaedic leg braces for her. As result, Khalida can now stand independently.