Wishes from Cameroon
People in Cameroon are suffering from the effects of Boko Haram’s attacks. Civilians are deliberately targeted by violence, and about 23,000 school-aged children are out of school.
This is what displaced people in the country wish for 2019:
Juliana Peter - displaced person living in Tourou village:
“My wish for the year 2019 is to find my two missing children who disappeared two years ago following Boko Haram’s attack. When we heard fired shots, everyone was running in all directions, that’s how my children left and I cannot find them anymore. I will continue to search for them as much as possible. I implore the collaboration of administrative and traditional authorities to help me find my children.”
Tagala Tata - displaced person living in Kerawa village:
“My greatest wish for 2019 is to have a piece of land for farming as I need to provide food for my family. I really wish the administrative authorities and the village chief could help us to have land for farming. Since I have been living in this village, our acute need is lack of land and tools for agriculture. Being considered as foreigner in the village makes things more complicated as nobody wants to rent lend to us and as a consequence we have no food to eat. I really hope it changes in 2019.”
Wishes from Tanzania
Political instability and violence in Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo have forced people to seek protection in neighboring Tanzania. Tanzania has a strict encampment policy. Refugees are forced to stay in mass shelters where they lack privacy and basic facilities. The risk of disease and abuse is high, and vital resources, like firewood for cooking and water are scarce.
These are the refugees’ wishes:
Nijimbere Leverien - from Burundi, living in Mtendeli refugee camp:
“A new year brings new things. I have a song and I want to shoot a video for it. I want help, with help I can be able to do that. As an artist, I don’t have many chances to show my talent outside of the camp, even inside the camp. Next year, I wish we’ll get more help, I think that will help change things.”
Miyogusemga Aline - from Burundi, living in Mtendeli refugee camp:
“I hope you can help me, that is my wish. In my house, we are so very poor. There is no place here where you can go to make money. My family has nothing.”
Wishes from Lebanon
With displaced people from Syria and Palestine, Lebanon has the highest number of refugees per capita in the world. This has put pressure on public services. Refugees cannot legally work and it’s difficult to move freely without fear of arrest or detention. Seventy six percent of Syrian refugee households live below the national poverty line.
This is what Syrian refugees in Lebanon wish for:
Mohamad* - from Syria, living in South Lebanon:
“I wish that everything goes back to the way it used to be in Syria. I wish I can feel happy again. And I hope that when I go back to my hometown, I can finally start working on and publishing the poetry book of mine”
Rawan* and Suzanna*- from Syria, living in South Lebanon:
“My wish for 2019, is that my family and I can travel abroad somewhere. I want to give the best education ever for my kids and be able to give them the proper medical treatment when they need it.”
*Names have been changed.