“New clothes, new day, new hope”
On a crisp January morning in Hasansham camp, families who recently fled Mosul roused their children out of bed early to gather outside a large white tent full of winter clothes.
Muhammad (above, center) and his children were among the first in line. Earlier in the week he received vouchers from UNICEF to purchase winter clothing for his six young children.
Families in Hasansham, Aishti and Debaga camps purchase children’s winter clothing of their choice from distributors in the camp using an innovative e-voucher system. The value of the vouchers — enough to cover 35,000 children — depends on the size of the family and age of the children, and is part of UNICEF’s overall winter response in Iraq.
Above, a UNICEF tent in Hasansham camp, where winter clothing is stored in preparation for distribution.
Sidra, 4, is Muhammad’s youngest daughter. Muhammad was happy to help her choose the right size of the jeans. The voucher system allows families to buy winter clothes that best suit the unique needs of their children.
“New clothes, new day, new hope,” he said.
Above, Saman, a UNICEF Emergency Officer, helps Muhammad’s son Ahmad, 6, try on a winter jacket.
The voucher-based winter clothing distribution is supported by generous donations from the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the European Commission’s Directorate-General for European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO).
Sidra was most excited about her pink sweater, while Ahmad was happy about his new boots.
“My boots were torn and my feet would get wet, so the thing that I like most is my new boots,” Ahmad said.
Ahmad, Muhammad, and Sidra walk back to their tent with their new clothes.
“This year we couldn’t celebrate Eid,” said Ahmad, referring to a Muslim celebration when children traditionally receive new clothes. “So today is like our Eid.”
Krman Kamal is a Communications Specialist with UNICEF Iraq.
Direction donations to UNICEF Iraq: https://support.unicef.org/campaign/donate-now/donate