Support Kurdish refugees
The Kurdish population has endured centuries of systemic displacement and dislocation in their historic quest for autonomy and independence. In the last decade, the Kurds have been internationally recognized for their fight against rising extremism and the Islamic State (IS) in Iraq and Syria. While the Kurds have become one IS’s most feared enemies on the battlefield, they are also one of the terrorist organization’s most targeted ethnic groups.
The civil war in Syria, which has been raging since 2011, has caused a massive exodus of civilians, including millions of Kurds. These refugees have been forced to undertake the perilous journey across the Mediterranean Sea to Europe in order to escape the terror of IS. The crisis escalated following IS’s 2014 Siege of Kobane—a Kurdish-held city in Syria’s Aleppo Governorate—when most of the city’s Kurdish population fled to Turkey, and approximately 300,000 Kurds were displaced.
Despite being in the midst of mass displacement, the Kurds themselves have managed to provide haven to over 2 million refugees within Iraqi Kurdistan. It has been said that the Kurds have “no friends but the mountains”—referring to the mountains that they have long retreated to in an effort to flee war, genocide, and systematic oppression. After escaping IS’s brutal offensive in Syria and Iraq, hundreds of thousands of Kurdish families have fled to Turkey, where they remain in desperate need of humanitarian aid. Many others have made the perilous journey across the sea to Europe, where they struggle for asylum or are imprisoned in refugee holding facilities. Today, the plight of the Kurds, who have provided a safe haven to citizens of all cultures, religions, and ethnicities, deserves to be seen and heard by the global community and not just the “mountains.” Please consider a donation to one of the organizations below that is providing critical aid to Kurds and other ethnic groups who have fled Syria.Support Kurdish Refugees
Personal Stories of Displacement
‘21 Children:’ Sharing Narratives of Refugee Children with The Kurdish Project
After coming across a deeply troubling video depicting the inhumane conditions of displaced persons in Europe, Alan Khaledi – an upcoming senior at Stanford University and an Erbil, Kurdistan native – was both disturbed and inspired to share the narratives of displaced persons (particularly children) across the Middle East and Europe through photographs.Read More
What I Thought Was a Dream: My Trip to Kurdistan
Since I was a little girl, my family and I have been traveling to Kurdistan every couple years or so. Every single time I’ve visited, I’ve loved it and admired my culture so much. Although I don’t remember my trip in 2003, the rest have been so incredibly amazing! The food, the cities, the mountains, the people and simply the vibe over there is so outstanding compared to where I was born and raised (Canada). There’s nowhere else I’d ever want to be.Read More
What Does it Mean to be a Kurd?
My name is Nujin*, and this is my story. Growing up in Ontario, Canada, I would say it was always a true struggle to understand and learn what it means to be a Kurd. From a young age my parents’ complete devotion to the Kurdish culture allowed me to understand the Kurdish culture, language, and many traditions. I have always been proud of who I am, despite what others may say, but this is one of the many reasons I fight so hard to be known as a Kurd. For me, I believe that “to be a Kurd” you must be strong willed, understanding, and most importantly- accepting of all.Read More