A Refugee Mother Endures the Unimaginable

Refugees and IDPs | Print

(For the privacy and dignity of the individual, this photo does not show the person mentioned in the story.)

Be it a noisy crowd, a deafening thunderbolt, or cacophony of voices, a mother will still be able to hear her child’s voice above the din. Be it a laugh, a cry, a scream or simply a call for mommy, a mother knows the voice of that precious soul she brought into this world, nurtured, loved, and would do anything to protect.

Mya is one such mother. To this day, she remembers with painful clarity the sound of her daughter screaming for help.

There was nothing markedly different about the morning. Being awakened by noise is practically second-nature to a mother. This morning, though, it wasn’t the sound of an alarm or little feet padding through the house. There was no sound of breakfast dishes.

This morning, the noises were coming from outside. The deep rumble grew louder and louder, rousing her from sleep. She looked outside to see giant earth-moving machines. They weren’t doing repairs. They weren’t digging a foundation or even erecting a barricade.

These machines were digging a hole—a ten-by-ten foot pit, to be precise. The commotion not only woke Mya and other parents; their children were curious to see what was going on. As children do, they got closer and closer to these giant diggers, crowding around to see what could possibly be in this gigantic hole.

And then the unthinkable. Soldiers began pushing the children in.

Mya’s six-year-old daughter ran to where her friend had entered this gaping wound created in their neighborhood and Mya watched helplessly as she, too, was pushed in.

Mya lunged for her daughter, only to be stopped by the threat of a bullet. And so, she stood.

As she stood, she heard the voice she had known and loved for six years. Just like the parents of the other 20 to 30 children who were buried alive right before their parents’ eyes, Mya heard her daughter’s voice. She heard it until the air was gone and the life extinguished.

Every night, she hears it replaying in her mind, a cruel melody of the unthinkable. An ominous threat that her own end may be near.

She’s not alone. She saw another child thrown into a fire and burned alive in front of her mother, their screams intertwining in an unfathomable shriek of horror.

Trauma-stricken, numbed by grief, Mya and the rest of her family somehow found the strength to make the ten-day journey to a refugee camp. With nothing but grass and tree leaves for food, the journey tested the limits of their endurance—physically, psychologically, spiritually. At the end of their trek, at long last, they were able to exhale–to regroup and begin to take stock of what they had lost, what they had left and how they could possibly move forward.

Thanks to your support, that possibility exists. You have given Mya and others the means to survive physically as they grapple with a new, excruciating normal. Your support means that they are safe from the open pits and fires. They have more to eat than grass. Thanks to generous supporters like you, they are relatively safe.

Your funds have secured 100 lighting systems for the camp’s sanitation areas. Because you gave, Mya and others will be provided with firewood to use as fuel for cooking, as well as seedlings for vegetables and other vegetation.

Essentially, they will receive the building blocks of a future. But the memories of their loss will not soon fade. The anguish of a mother unable to save her child will not go away. These are wounds too big for human hands. The distance to peace far too great to cross but by divine intervention.

Your prayers are critical as Mya and her family learns how to breathe again. A mother will never forget her child’s cries for help. Above every other noise on this earth, that is the one that will never be quieted–but for the still, small voice of a heavenly Father who also knows the anguish of a child’s cry. A heavenly Father who is the only hope of peace beyond this nightmare, the one who gently sings a new song of hope to the brokenhearted.

You can help. Give to BGR and ease the suffering, lessen the pain and send comfort to those who have lost so much.


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