Faheem* is a Sudanese refugee living with his family in Amman, Jordan. His family fled from Sudan because his work as a human rights activist made it unsafe for them. They made their way to Amman and were lucky to find an apartment in a city where housing is limited and rent is exorbitant. Food is still hard to come by, but the means with which to buy food is even more complicated, as Faheem, like many Sudanese refugees living in Jordan, cannot obtain a legal work permit.
“Here,” Faheem explains, “…we are just surviving.” Jesuit Refugee Service Jordan visits Faheem and his family regularly through a Home Visits program. JRS teams, many refugees themselves, visit hundreds of refugee families throughout Amman. JRS uses these visits as an opportunity to accompany refugees to make sure they are not marginalized from service networks by identifying particularly vulnerable families. JRS also uses these visits as a way to identify what assistance or further service is needed. For Faheem, came just in time, and for that, he is grateful: “To be honest, JRS is the only organization that works with Sudanese refugees here in Jordan.”
Ahmad is the JRS team member dedicated to working with Faheem’s family. He is a Sudanese refugee himself, and he and Faheem speak like old friends, each aware of the other’s suffering. He is concerned for the family’s well being and health, constantly checking on Faheem’s wife, who is now 9 months pregnant, Faheem’s back pain, and the well being of the children. Faheem is grateful to Ahmad and to JRS for their accompaniment. They otherwise spend their days waiting – waiting for the chance to work, perhaps for somewhere else to go, and most certainly for the arrival of their new daughter. Faheem is most grateful that his two older children can be in school. “I have to look for a better future for my children…this is why I am here.”
*Names and identifying details have been changed to protect the privacy of individuals