The longest day


In one of the first spring days, we are sitting in a tent, in Tel Abbas. Winter seems far behind as well as the cold and the intrusive mud in the streets. Someone knocks at the door, we open and Abu Suliman from Homs appears at the entrance. He has a gloomy look, far looking over the border, in the lands where is still winter in the men’s hearts. “Look here”. He tells us of an attack with sarin gas in Khan Sheikkun, a small village at two hours’ drive from our position in northern Lebanon. Two hours distant as two centuries. In his phone, I could see horrible images, children piled one on another in dreadful positions. Their eyes wide open and a pale complexion. Some have a white slime coming down from the mouth. Eyes still full of terror, a violence to the heart and to the mind of any observer. (more…)

The run

The death of Ayyed left us with a bitter taste, a bite too big especially for his relatives and friends, who had to swallow too many bitter pills in these years. Ayyed was a young boy living in a lock-up with his family. Together, they ran away from Syria not to be afraid of war. But here they find themselves running to survive, chasing the stolen dignity. Some of us knew him since a while, others spent even the eve of the year with him, yet others just caught a glimpse of him, but Ayyed was there and, even if he was living like any other refugee a ghost life made of narrow spaces and sacrifices, he was chasing his stolen dignity too. (more…)

Abu Rabiya speech: Presentation of the book Badheea

Abu rabyia speechRome, 03/01/2017 – Presentation of the book Badheea, written by Mattia Civico. The book tells about the Italian initiative to open humanitarian corridor meant to welcome Syrian refugees who fled to Lebanon. One year later, Mattia Civico writes about the expirience. During the presentation, Abu Rabiya, one of the Syrian who reached Italy through the humanitarin corridor, addresses a speech to Italian people, associations and isntitutions. (more…)

Mixing tears

IMAG1799(1)When volunteers get home from a project, they often have to deal with the experiences and the emotions they have lived during the last few months. When we are on the field, we don’t always have time to realize what is really happening, we try to decode feelings and we keep them in a corner of our hearts, in order to face them one by one at home, calmly. At least, it is what I usually do.
Yesterday, I read this text I wrote in a very difficult moment of my stay in Lebanon and during Aleppo’s “final assault”. (more…)

Eyes Out

I haven’t learned all that there is to know about the Syrian war. I barely learnt where Lebanon is.
I haven’t fed a whole refugee camp with containers of humanitarian aids. I haven’t even cooked due to the abundance of improvised invitations to eat breakfast/lunch/dinner together. I haven’t saved thousands of children giving away vaccines or drugs. I sat with them in the waiting room. (more…)