‘And what would you like to wish for?’

– Magic.

The girl in pink

Amal fled the besieged city of Homs in Syria at the age of seven and sought refuge in Lebanon. She and her family have been living in a refugee camp in the Bekaa Valley since 2014.

Her father says she cries a lot and rarely speaks after the trauma they experienced in Syria. He says it’s because she badly misses her grandmother who had to stay behind. No one knows what has become of her.

Photographer Dominic Nahr and Martina Dase of Save the Children Germany describe meeting 11 year old Amal as the inspiration for the project “I Am Alive”, and where the idea of the book was born: ‘This is the moment we decide we want to capture Amal’s story. The story and the face of this girl: her silence, her grief. To show what war can do to a child. That is our mission; that is why we are here.’

‘I give the best of myself to my children,’ Amals’ father, Gibran, assures us as we sit sheltering in the 40° C heat in the shade of the awning. Gibran is good-natured, well-educated and religious man and works as a teacher at a Save the Children pre-school. This allows him to contribute to the livelihood of his family. He describes their situation in the following words: ‘War is more than a military operation. This is a war against children.’

And Amal, this eleven-year-old girl from Homs, surviving in this camp and struck silent with grief, has an unbroken dignity that seems to say: “Yes, this is me. Just look.”


This text is an excerpt from the book “I AM ALIVE”
by Martina Dase and Dominic Nahr.

All information about the book and where to order can be found here.

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