We drove up to Al Mafraq this morning for our first round of goat distribution. Excitement was oozing from each one of us as it sank in that this goat project was actually happening! We first visited these families in March, and we knew we had to find a way to support them sustainably.
We met families living in unbearable desert conditions. The Syrian refugees lacked access to medical care, education, and longed for a stable food supply. Many were suffering from the consequences of dehydration due to lack of clean drinking water. We knew we couldn’t walk away without committing to offering some form of additional support.
Our dream turned into reality today with the distribution of our first 20 goats! I watched the maps on my phone as we drove to the first site. We kept inching closer and closer to Syria.
It was challenging to remain excited and joyful as we drove into the first camp, which is located just 800 meters from the Syrian border. Young families were roasting in the desert heat under tents made of blankets and tarps. Flies swarmed us the second we opened the car doors, and the harsh conditions sunk in again as we looked around us.
We were welcomed by a few Syrian families, who told us the unofficial camp is home to both Syrian and Pakistani families. I couldn’t help but wonder if there was anyone supporting these Pakistani families.
We greeted the first two families who would each receive two goats. There were 17 kids between the two families! That means the first four goats will be producing fresh milk for 17 kids, kids kids!! We all had huge smiles on our faces as the breeder informed us on of the four goats was pregnant :).
Bringing aid to these areas always leaves me with a bitter sweet feeling. A feeling of gratitude for having the opportunity to make a difference, yet a sense of helplessness due to the vastness of the dire needs. The most challenging aspect of humanitarian service for me is the inability to provide for everyone. There is always a gap needed to be filled, which makes the sense of fulfillment hard to achieve.
We have raised funds for 255 goats, which means we can now bring goats to 127 families. We still need 545 goats to support the other families in the area. Buy a goat, host a party, or spread the word: gatherforgoats.com,
More information on the campaign can be found here: