Her name is Beritan, although her friends and family call her Bitu. Her mother called her Beritan because for her it means “brave”. Bitu was forced to leave her home, friends and relatives in Syria due to the ongoing crisis. She now lives with her mother, and younger brother and sister in the Domiz refugee camp in Iraq. Her father left the family two years ago. He became violent towards her mother then one day he said he was going to work and never returned.
Much has changed in the world over the past five years, yet Syria’s children continue to suffer because of this long and brutal conflict. So many like Bitu have lost family, friends, schools and homes. “My family and I came from Syria three years ago. We now live in this camp. We used to live in a big house, with a big garden. We even had a pond and fruit trees in our garden. And we were always surrounded by relatives. I want to go back to Syria one day.
“I wrote a poem for my mum on the toilet wall. It’s the first thing she sees every morning when she opens the front door to the house.
“I love my mum very much.
My mum is so beautiful.
My mum is great.
Mum, you have sacrificed so much for us.
So thank you so much, mum.
I love my brother and sister.
“My sister Loreen is seven years old. We call her Lulu. She can’t talk well and she can’t walk properly but she still goes to school. I carry her to school every morning and also help her walk back after school.“
“I love school. My favourite subject is maths. I want to be a lawyer because I want to be able to protect other children.”