“Life is easier for us now that Ziad can function normally,” his father tells us. “It’s as though a heavy weight has been lifted off our shoulders.”
Ten-year old Ziad and his family live as refugees in Lebanon. Their life here has been difficult, largely because both Ziad and his mother were badly injured in an airstrike in Syria. The family have been struggling for many months to find medical help - and luckily they came across INARA.
Three years ago, Ziad was at his home in Syria. It was a day like any other, and the family sat in front of the fireplace trying to keep warm. There was a fuel shortage at the time due to the ongoing fighting in the area, and so the family bought benzene.
When an airstrike landed on their street, their fireplace exploded. The damage to the house was huge, and Ziad and his mother were both badly injured in the fire. Ziad’s arm was severely burnt, as was his mother’s face and chest.
There were no working hospitals nearby to them, and they had heard that the nearest hospital was running low on supplies because of the war. The treatment that Ziad and his mother needed seemed impossible to find in Syria. The family had no other choice but to treat these horrific burns with basic ointments, as that was all they could find.
Life as refugees in Lebanon
Ziad’s father had been working in Lebanon for years. When he heard about what happened to his child and wife, he helped them to cross the border into Lebanon, where they now live as refugees.
His father works as a concierge in a building. They were given a small room with a bathroom and kitchen. Their living conditions are cramped. “I won’t complain,” his father explains. “We are still better than most of the Syrian people who live here as refugees.”
Finding help for Ziad
Because Ziad couldn’t get the medical assistance he needed in Syria, the burns on his arm hardened around his elbow, severely restricting his movement. “His arm movement was really not good,” his father explains to us. “Simple tasks for a child like playing were painful for him.”
The family struggle financially, and would not have been able to afford the expensive treatment that Ziad needed. His father was one day told about INARA by a friend, whose son Ammar had received treatment thanks to our help. He called, hoping that he would finally find someone who could help his family.
We introduced Ziad to doctors at the American University of Beirut Medical Center (AUBMC) who performed a simple scar-revision surgery on his arm.
“The treatment was very good,” his father tells us with a relieved smile on his face. “Before the surgery he was unable to bend his arm. Sometimes when he was playing the wound would split and bleed and he’d be in a lot of pain. But now he’s a lot better, thank God!”
Ziad’s father now feels relieved about his son’s future. “All I wish for my son is that he will be healthy and get a good education,” he tells us.
We’re hoping that Ziad’s future will be a lot brighter. Thanks to your donations to help refugee children from Syria who are in desperate need of life-altering medical treatment we are able to help children like Ziad. We can only do this with your help!
UNICEF contributed to Ziad's treatment.