Early April, following very heavy bombardments, it was decided to deport us to northern Syria. My wife, me and our baby got out. It was supposed for my parents to come with us but it was difficult, and they said they would leave with the next convoy. Unfortunately, there was a breach in the agreement, and the bombing on Douma returned heavier than before. The bombing resulted in massacres, including the chemical one. It was a very painful feeling to know nothing about my parents who stayed there, trying various ways to know if they were okay.
When the bombing stopped, there was an agreement that people should leave al Ghouta to Jarabulus. I was able to know my family was okay, and I spoke with them, but I was surprised that they refused to get out, and decided to stay in Douma. Here was the shock.
When I left, my father asked me not to wait and to leave immediately to Turkey. He said that out of fear of bombing, and because he was worried about my future not to be destroyed. Although I was not convinced, I said okay.
When I was in Douma, I worked in the local council for four years. At first, I was a volunteer, and it is so good when one does his best to serve his country, and to be satisfied with that. It made me feel good that I contributed to keeping the civil and properties rights.
I found my second character in the Childhood Escorts Network and knew my capacities and was able to develop myself more. The day I was accepted to work with them, I had a baby.
I started working with them as a monitoring and evaluation officer for the programs and activities. I liked the work very much, especially because it contributed to helping children get their rights and helped protecting them from many issues such as child labor, ignorance and mendicity. It was very good to have a considerable role in raising the awareness of children and parents.
We reached Qalaat al-Madiq in Hama northern countryside. There was no specific destination for me, but the target was any place with no bombing and some security.
I settled in the city of Sarmada in the northern countryside of Idlib, after traveling many times, and knowing almost all of the Syrian northern liberated areas. Of course, the possibility of going to Turkey was impossible for several reasons, the first is that this would be through smuggling, and this was difficult especially with my wife and child. The second reason is that my financial condition did not allow me. I do not have a place in Turkey to go to, I have many friends but I need a place to live in and a job to make a living. My wife and I will need at least one year to learn the language and adapt. 7 years of my life will be lost if I go because I’m sure I cannot find a job. These and other reasons made me forget about going to Turkey.
Two weeks after our arrival to the northern areas, I began working with Hurras Network at Darat Izza office. It was necessary to do a tour of the child-friendly spaces. I had again the feeling that we should not go and leave these children. If we do not maintain their rights and raise their awareness, it is certain that children will not achieve anything. Most of the residents in the places I visited were IDPs and ignorance was high. This reinforced my determination to settle here to continue defending the principles we went to the streets for 7 years ago.
It is true that many things would be better if I go to Turkey; my wife and I could complete our education, and our certificates would be recognized, and my son would grow up safely away from war. By staying here, I would be in my country. It is true that I am a stranger and a displaced person, but at least people here speak my language. When I’m bored, I can go wherever I want. I will also be comfortable because I have not forgotten my goals, or sacrificed years of my life in vain.