Primo piano Sobhia

Sobhia’s Story: A Beacon of Hope in Earthquake-Wounded Syria

Jacopo Battistini9 February 2024
The streets of Aleppo devastated by the earthquake of February 2023.

Exactly one year ago, in February 2023, a magnitude 7.8 earthquake devastated Syria and Turkey, killing over 56,000 people and leaving millions displaced. Aleppo, Syria’s most populous city, was one of the hardest hit areas.

Sobhia Skeef, a woman who lives in Aleppo, recounted the terror of that day: “I was paralyzed with fear. My head and my heart stopped; I didn’t understand what was going on anymore.” His house was severely damaged by the earthquake, making it uninhabitable.

Like Sobhia, thousands of people in Aleppo have found themselves homeless and with their lives turned upside down. In a context already marked by years of war, the earthquake has further aggravated the humanitarian crisis in Syria. Indeed, in some cities of this tormented country, such as Idlib, the earthquake and the war are added to the occupation of Islamic fundamentalist groups.

In this dramatic situation, Pro Terra Sancta immediately took action to bring relief to the affected people.

The intervention of Pro Terra Sancta

Pro Terra Sancta distributed basic necessities such as food, water, blankets and hygiene kits. The organization also provided medical and psychological assistance to people, especially children, traumatized by the earthquake.

A special effort has been dedicated to the restoration of damaged houses. Thanks to the work of engineers and architects, Pro Terra Sancta assessed the damage and began repair work.

The story of Sobhia is an emblematic example of Pro Terra Sancta’s intervention. Her home has been renovated, allowing her to return to living in safety and dignity.

“I had no other home, thank God I met Pro Terra Sancta which sent young workers to inspect and then repair my home. Now I’m back home and I go on with my life,” Sobhia said gratefully.

In addition to Sobhia, Pro Terra Sancta has helped hundreds of people in Syria. The organization has repaired more than 260 homes and provided more than 470,000 hot meals this year.

A commitment that continues

Currently, 90% of the Syrian population survives the end of the month thanks to humanitarian aid alone, and 265,000 people are still displaced. Even those who have managed to return to their homes are still experiencing critical situations from an energy point of view: 68% of the Syrian population lives on less than two hours of electricity a day.

And so, Pro Terra Sancta’s commitment in Syria continues. We are still present in the area to support the population in the reconstruction and resumption of daily life.

Our association is striving to restore a dignified life to as many families as possible as soon as possible, focusing on the reconstruction of homes and psychological assistance to children who, following the earthquake, began to suffer from post-traumatic stress syndrome. Day centres have been set up for these children, which today provide, in addition to psychological support, a safe and welcoming environment to more than 6000 children.

With these projects, our association works to promote a culture of dialogue and peace in a country where religious and social divisions are increasingly accentuated by a humanitarian situation.

Here we tell you more about our commitment in Syria and how you can support us!