Living in no man's land - an update on the Iraqi Christian refugees in Jordan

You may have read our interviews with Raed and Alen, two Iraqi Christians now living as refugees in Jordan. They belong to one of the oldest Christian communities in the world, a community which has lived in Iraq since Thomas the Apostle came to the region in the 1st century AD. 

Modern day Amman, the capital of Jordan

Sadly, Christianity in Iraq has been in decline for decades and it is unlikely that Raed, Alen, or the thousands of other Christian refugees we are helping in Jordan will ever return to their ancestral homeland. It is simply too dangerous for them to go back.  

While Jordan is relatively tolerant of Christians (around 2% of its population is Christian), the government does not permit Iraqi refugees to work, which means they cannot settle there. As a FRRME staff member who recently visited Jordan put it: "They cannot go back, they cannot go forward, they cannot stay where they are." 

Iraqi Christians in Marka (a suburb of Amman) queue for food vouchers, which we regularly provide

Iraqi Christians often fall between the major aid organisations and international support networks. While they are registered with the UN as refugees, they do not receive any support from the UNHCR (the aid branch of the UN). Consequently, Iraqi Christians are relying on the good will of fellow Christians.

FRRME is partnering with 8 churches in Jordan, including the Nazarene Church, Syrian Orthodox Church, and Greek Catholic Church. Together, we are feeding 3,000 Iraqi Christians every month. We are also funding a free health clinic in Sweifieh (a suburb of Amman) which serves an average of 200 patients a month. 

Father Immanuel of the Syrian Orthodox Church (left) and Father Bolis of the Greek Catholic Church (right). Through our partnerships with them, FRRME is feeding 350 Iraqi Christian families every month

Many of the Iraqi Christians in our care would like to emigrate to The West where they would be safe but the only country that has opened its doors to them is Australia. Until their asylum applications are processed they are stuck in a no man's land between their old life in Iraq and their new life free from religious persecution. 

This is Alen, he has been in Jordan for two years waiting for his asylum application to be processed 

But with your help, the Iraqi Christians in our care are being well looked after. They have food, shelter and medical care. Their faith is strong and they are hopeful that things will get better. 

Below is an infographic showing how your donations help
 

If you would like to support our work in Jordan and Iraq, please see the giving options below. 

How you can help

If you are a UK resident, you can make a single or regular donation via our website by clicking  here

American supporters can make a donation via our sister organisation, FRRME America, by clicking  here

Alternatively, you can make a donation to The Emergency Appeal for Iraqi Refugees by clicking  here

Thank you,

The FRRME Team

If you are a UK taxpayer and would like to gift aid your donations, please contact us at:  office@frrme.org or write to FRRME, PO Box 229, Petersfield, Hampshire, GU32 9DL.

The American Foundation for Relief and Reconciliation in the Middle East is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. U.S. taxpayers may make contributions that are deductible under federal tax guidelines. For further assistance please contact:  info@frrmeamerica.org.