In the Spring edition of ONE, writer Dale Gavlak reports on the plight of Iraqi Christian refugees who are seeking sanctuary in Jordan. One place they are receiving help: the Italian Hospital in Amman, which has long been supported by CNEWA.
CNS reporter Mark Pattison visited the hospital recently:
Dr. Khalid Shammas, medical director, said the refugees “come with different diseases. Some of them we are not familiar with.”
They also arrive with physical wounds or with psychological scars that come with being torn from their homeland.
“Most of the refugees are coming from the north of Iraq, from Mosul,” Shammas said. “They were in the middle, upper class. … It is a big psychological trauma to them. They need psychological treatment. In Jordan, we don’t have many (who can provide it.)”
Sister Elizabeth said that at Christmas, the hospital took up a collection to give their patients a little bit of money.
“You know what they said? ‘We don’t need your money. Give us a future,’” she recalled.
Money is hard to come by, the hospital staff acknowledged. The charges to the private patients help pay for some of the charity care the Italian Hospital provides. But “we have to squeeze,” Sister Elizabeth said. “Sometimes we don’t know how we are going to pay the staff,” which numbers 130.
Read more about the challenges refugees are facing and how the Italian Hospital is trying to help.
The video below takes us inside this important facility and offers a glimpse at some of those being helped.