The small village of Qaryatein is situated between Damascus and Palmyra, not far from the monastery of Mar Moussa. Until recently it had been spared from the conflict between the regular army and the rebels.
However, lately it has been caught up in the turmoil with the arrival of rebels in the town and, as a consequence, the bombing counter-attacks of the regular army.
Qaryatein is bordered by the monastery of Mar Elian which is incorporated into that of Mar Moussa. Here, about a week ago, several thousand people comprising both Christian and Moslem families have arrived seeking refuge. Father Jacques has taken them in and has asked, in vain, for support from humanitarian organizations, such as ICRC. He is the one who has made us aware of the urgent need, not only of food and medicines, but also of mattresses and blankets. The monastery obviously had not been able to prepare for such an influx of refugees.
Thanks to Coup de Pouce, we are able to bring direct aid to these families by catering for their most urgent needs. We are hoping to be able to raise a more substantial sum than we have in the past for other families, which were isolated cases. This time, Coup de Pouce is going to go against its policy and help a group quite simply because the situation has arisen.