Abu Abdo has been here in Ajloun with his family for three months. He lives in this apartment with his son-in-law, his son, and their families. His grandson was born two months ago in the border area between Jordan and Syria. His parents named him Abdullah after his Majesty King Abdullah of Jordan in thanks. “Here we feel secure.”
“We came over the border. There were 50 people in our group, including many children. We came close to the border in taxi, and then we walked the last 3 kilometres,” he says.
Abu Abdo was a painter back in Syria, he would like to do the same job in Jordan. He has four teenage children, two boys and two girls. The family decided to leave after the two boys disappeared. “For three days, we did not know anything. When they came back, we decided – let’s go.”
“Homs is like a ghost town now. Only 3 per cent of the population is left. We noticed that everyone was leaving. It was hard on a daily basis even to do normal things – going out to get food, you don’t know if you will come back or not. It was hard to live a normal life. We were very scared all the time. We had no appetite for eating. The neighbours would bring food to each other to help each other out.”
“Our landlord is very helpful, he is sympathetic to the Syrian people. The rent here is reasonable, and he has bought things for us to help furnish the home. He brought mattresses, furniture, and mats. We have not been able to pay the rent for two months now. We are lucky, he is supportive, and we are grateful to him – he is a poor man himself.”
“The hardest thing is just being away from home. We are grateful we have made it here, but we still think about other people back at home. Sometimes there is no mobile phone coverage, so we cannot get news of our relatives.”
“Life here is a blessing, compared with the one back home”