22May2024

SCM Medical Missions

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3806 Whitman Ave N
Seattle WA 98103

+1 206-545-7307

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GreeceHumanitarian AidRefugeesWomen & Children

July Update

July was a good month for SCM. Here is what we were able to do this last month thanks to your generous donations:

Class is back in session at Iliadis!

Class is back in session at Iliadis!

  • Supplied food to over 3,000 people inside of Syria for one month
  • Opened a school at Iliadis Camp in Greece for children and for adults
  • Distributed food everyday during Ramadan: bread, fruits vegetables and dates
  • Distributed gift bags for the Eid – full of toys, candy, new clothes for the children
  • Distributed over 1000 korans and prayer beads that the refugees requested
  • Sent out school supplies with nearly every mission volunteer leaving from the US to Greece
  • Participated in the Hackathon/Hack for Humanity with Microsoft and came away with a system to streamline our communication with our teams in Greece and gather more information and data to track progress, supplies, issues, and more
  • Distributed clothing that we had sent via container to Jordan to the refugees there
  • Helped several refugee families with funds to pay for surgery and medicines that were needed

With your continued support and donations we can continue to help the Syrian people. Even though Ramadan is finished and we have all celebrated the Eid, the displaced Syrians are still living in the same conditions, and in some ways worse than before, and the situation is not going to get better any time soon. The Syrians are facing uncertain futures, they don’t know what will come next or where they will end up. We need to keep our efforts going. Please donate now, and help SCM provide more nutrition, more educational opportunities, more medications, more school supplies, more baby formula, and so on. The more you give, the more we can accomplish. Any amount helps!

Thank you all again for your help and your loving hearts.

~Rita Zawaideh

 

Humanitarian AidRefugees

Latest needs for the camps in Greece

If you are thinking of going on one of our missions to Greece, here are some of the items that are in high demand and need to be taken over with the volunteers, or money raised and purchased in Greece. If you have any questions about these items, don’t hesitate to call us in the office!

  • Sunscreen
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Coconut oil
  • Tea Tree oil
  • Lavender oil
  • New underwear all sizes
  • Summer shorts for men and children
  • Infant clothes, bibs, blankets, onesies
  • Abayas
  • Headscarves
  • Long tunics
  • Leggings
  • Long skirts
  • Shampoo
  • Toothpaste and Toothbrushes
  • Wet wipes
  • Camping ovens and fuel – buy in Greece only
  • Flip flops
  • Tennis Shoes all sizes
  • Children’s water colors and small paint brushes
  • Construction paper
  • Crayons
  • Notebooks
  • Vitamins – Adult, senior, children’s, and prenatal
  • Yarn
  • Sewing kits with thread and needles
  • Lice medicine and combs
EducationGreeceHumanitarian AidRefugees

SCM School at Iliadis Camp, Greece

Here is an update from Rasha, our coordinator in Greece who has been working hard to get classes going at a few of the camps we are working in. These are photos from Iliadis Camp.

First 2 days of school. We had a math teacher who’s from another camp as well as the Arabic teacher who’s from Iliadis. I taught Arabic at first as well as English, and today taught Greek! Yup, you read that correctly. I taught only four phrases – Thank you. ..You’re welcome. …Good morning. ..and Good evening. The Greek teacher got held up so I filled in in the meantime. Keela also taught English to the 14+ class today. A refugee from the camp and a volunteer from New Zealand taught gym.

In Iliadis we will start teaching English to the adults next week, inshAllah. They’re all really anxious. They try to sit it the school when we’re teaching the kids but I have to tell them to wait for their turn! They’re very excited to learn. We will be providing books, pens, etc for all adults. We’re also offering an hour a day of German as well. So far the kids and adults love what we’re doing. The adults come up to me daily and are so grateful.

Below are some photos from the school. We need your help to keep these programs going – the schools, the maternity housing, supplies, etc. We also need funds for the food distributions we are doing. Please donate today!

EducationGreeceHumanitarian AidRefugeesSyriaWomen & Children

Getting Back to School

SCM is setting up a section of a large warehouse for our school at the Frakapor camp in Greece. Tomorrow will be our first day operating there, and the first couple of days will be spent assessing the kids to see where they are at academically. We are being helped by refugees who used to be teachers back home in Syria, as well as our humanitarian volunteers that join the missions.

Supplies for the school are being sent to Greece with our volunteers, and some supplies are being purchased there in Greece. You can help get more school supplies to them by visiting our Amazon Wish List where you can find items needed for the schools and for our New Baby Welcome Kits that are also going to go to Greece, but in a container in September.

 

 

Humanitarian AidRefugees

Helping Refugees in the Seattle Area

If you would like to help the Syrian refugees being resettled in the Seattle area, here is some information you need to know:

There is a Facebook group you can join for discussion on the incoming refugees:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/WelcomeHomeRefugees/

If you have household items to donate please contact:

In cooperation with MAPS and MCRC Oraib Khalifeh (oraib.khalifeh@gmail.com) and Methal Dabaj (mithal.dabaj@gmail.com) are the designated contacts to organize the donations.

They are maintaining a storage unit in Redmond – Marymoor Self Storage – to keep items until the families need them. You will need to contact Oraib or Methal to arrange a time to meet one of them there and drop your donations off.

Please do not leave any donations for the incoming/resettled refugees at the SCM office, we are no longer accepting donations there for them, they must go to the storage unit in Redmond, and coordinated with Oraib or Methal.

 

Thank you!!

Humanitarian AidRefugeesSyria

A message from Rita Zawaideh, CEO of SCM

I went to sleep last night thinking this is the fifth year of the Syrian crisis and it is not getting any better. We seem to be going backwards every day. People ask why are people fleeing Syria and all I can do is show them the pictures and tell them some of the stories that the Syrian have told us to what happened to them when in Syria. They are all looking for a better existence for their children.

Most Syrians love their country and are proud of being Syrian. They cannot see an end to the fighting as we here in the West do not see an end.

Inside Syria, the situation has continued to worsen, with fighting intensifying in all regions and the economy and services in a state of general collapse. This is driving yet more people to leave, but is also having a profound impact on those who have already escaped to neighboring countries.

When people flee from war, they usually do so hoping to return soon. So they move nearby, perhaps to family or friends in a nearby town, or just across the border, where they can keep an eye on their homes and livelihoods. But after more than five years of conflict, many Syrians have now abandoned that hope. Their homes have been devastated, their families torn apart, and there is little prospect for peace. With nothing left, and their places of exile under increasing strain, hundreds of thousands of people are now ready to travel much further to find the security they so desperately need.

In most countries, refugees are not allowed to enter the labor market formally and face sanctions if caught. In Jordan, for example, they risk being returned to the camps; in Lebanon, they are forced to sign a pledge not to work if they wish to renew their residency status.

Without income, people are forced, first, to spend their savings, and then to take on debt. Even worse options may then lie in store. After years of grueling costs, many are simply no longer able to pay for rent, food or basic items.

SCM started the campaign to work in Jordan almost five years ago and we were organizing about 6 missions each year. After 4 years we were hearing about more people crossing the border to Turkey and then taking the boats to Lesbos, Greece. SCM moved its operations to Lesbos to help the refugees arriving there. After about 6 months on the island the situation changed and the different EU countries started to close their borders and people got stranded on the border of Greece and Macedonia. SCM moved our operation on Lesbos to northern Greece and the Idomeni area camps. We set up mobile clinics and the volunteers still kept coming and wanting to help. Last week the Greek government started to close those makeshift camps and moving the refugees to official military-run camps. We have been asked to work in those camps by the Greek government and SCM agreed. We set up our clinic and started working at the Sindos camp this past week.

Now what is next for the Syrians?

Before this move a lot of them wanted to stay in Idomeni near the border and be ready when it opened to cross to the Europe they had seen in the news- that was greeting them with open arms and flowers and welcome signs, but that has stopped and now they are stuck in this endless cycle of not sure where to go and what life has left for them.

When I go to the camps and talk to the refugees and try and give them hope I am also trying to give myself hope that we will be able to do more than just the medical id and the humanitarian. I want to reassure them that they will have a life and there will be schools for their kids to go to and they will have food, clothing and a roof over their head, but honestly I am not seeing anything like that.

What is the world doing but turning their backs on these people, they really want to go home. Like everyone else in any major crisis- is get out to protect yourself and your family and then as things get better go back home, but even that has been taken away from them.

I never thought I would still be doing this work for this long- this has taken over my life and I have been obsessed with trying to figure a way out to help, but I keep being hit with a wall. I am living in my house with heat, water, car and food can do what I want, but these people cant. There are so many that I know, the tour guide I used to use in Syria had to flee, friends of my daughter, family members that are spread all over the place and can’t ever see each other or attend a family funeral, or a wedding, or any other family event. People that are forced to get married in the camps and ant have the wedding that they had planned for. All they see is where are we going to be in a week or a month or a year from now. Where will my kids be- will they be alive. Some parents I talk to are so depressed that suicide is in their thoughts since they do not believe they are good parents not able to take care of their own. Women left to take care of 4 or 5 or more children not sure where to get the means to feed and clothe them, since the husband or the man of the house was killed tortured or in prison.

Please help us by making a donation of any size to help them live a decent life until we (the world) can find a solution to this crisis.