Abdul Aziz is a Syrian refugee living in Gaziantep with his wife and three children, all of whom have disabilities. His oldest son, Abdullah, 6, (pictured with one of his brothers) is on the autism spectrum, and also has a speech impediment, learning disabilities, and is visually impaired. After the February 6th earthquake, they had to flee their third-floor apartment and walk barefoot to his parents’ house. The earthquake has caused significant financial, emotional, and social strain on their family, especially Abdullah, who doesn’t understand the situation and has constant meltdowns. He has been anxious and afraid since the earthquake, crying throughout the day, and asking his father if their home, which they returned to despite its many cracks, will break or fall on them.
Despite their hardships, they have received little support from humanitarian organizations, except for Blossom Hill. Abdul said: “Other than your support, I have not heard of any help for families of children with disabilities. My personal impression is that all aid from humanitarian organizations has stopped. Until today, none of them have come to my area.”