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2. Housing Project

Through support from donors from Italy, the Chaldean Community in the US as well as Caritas, we started the " family rent " program whereby we began renting houses that would accommodate 2-3 families in buildings that can house (75-100) families. There is a committee which works to rehabilitate the houses before the families are moved into them. The average house rent for one housing unit is (US$ 650-750) according to the residential area where the units are rented. The duration of the program is between (3-9) months taking into consideration the possibility of the return of some families to their original areas when liberated.

3. Health Support

There is a great need for supporting the health situation as there are many people in need of major or small surgical operations. They cannot afford the high costs incurred for such medical operations. On calling the public hospitals, patients have to wait for a long time and often without finding what they need. Drugs are also of urgent importance for the IDPs as they

are sold at relatively very high prices in Iraq. Also other cases like childbirth, junior surgical operations, and chronic diseases need to be supported. The health care situation of children poses a big problem especially at present and future with the change in weather and the spread of viruses.

4. Study and Schools

There is a big need for the construction of caravan-like schools to replace the public schools that have to be evacuated by the IDPs because schools have already started. Both IDP and local students have not been able to join their schools now occupied by the IDPs. There is also a need to build (3 schools) in Ankawa which is the biggest IDP center. Similarly, 2 schools need to be built in Duhok and Zakho each. It is possible to involve the teaching staff from the IDPs who receive their salaries from the government without doing any teaching.

5. The direct role of the German church

It is important to have a representative or committee from the German church in Iraq, especially in northern Iraq, to coordinate and evaluate aid work and help provide a realistic picture of the situation as well as possible projects and ideas. It is possible to make use of the Coordination Office/Iraq Catholic Church Project Development that belongs to the Council of Bishops in Iraq that can be empowered for such a task.

6. Helping the Clergymen

There are five Catholic Dioceses and two Orthodox ones that suffer from lack of funding after losing their endowments and faithful who took refuge in Erbil and Duhok. The Dioceses of Erbil and Duhok suffer most in this respect . We request that German dioceses undertake the task of priest sustenance in those dioceses for one year bearing in mind that the salary of a priest is (EUR 900) per month.

1. IDP family housing

The bishops committee seeks to build low-cost houses in the cities of Erbil, Duhok, and the villages of Zakho to help Christians survive and stay and also to find job opportunities for the IDPs. This project will provide an alternative for immigration. It will also contribute to supporting the Christian existence in some villages that house ( 25- 70) families at present.

Increase in the number of families in these villages would be viewed as an empowerment and attraction for families and an opportunity for investment, especially when the number of families has reached (250-300) in each village.

We have made this suggestion to some European governments asking for funding. We also urge the German government to allocate funds for this project bearing in mind that the lands on which to start the projects will be

offered by the churches in Erbil and Duhok. The government in KR has promised to provide the needed necessary services for the project.

2. Developing youth potentials

There are many competent Christian students who have had no chance to pursue their postgraduate education. We look forward to the cooperation of the German government in this respect to offer scholarships for top students in the disciplines of medicine, engineering, computer and languages. Investing on such youth potentials will play a big role in enhancing Christian existence and contribution in the life of the new Iraq society.

Throughout its history, the church in Iraq is well known for having the strongest and most important educational and health institutions. With such institutions, the church will have an opportunity to support and enhance its mission even when only a few Christians will stay. It will enable the church to contribute to the humanitarian formation of all the Iraqi society that is really in need of a new formation due to many wars and conflicts that happened during its modern history.

4. Contribution in supporting the institutional aspect of the church of Iraq through an effective presence of the German church in Iraq, which is known for the high level of organization of its institutions.                           

+ Bashar Warda CSsR  Chaldean Archdiocese of Erbil