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Shahoud and the team of heroes

Prevention
Syria

Shahoud is 12 and lives in a camp for displaced people in northern Syria. Several months ago, he was injured by an accident and had to have his right hand amputated. Today, Shahoud has turned his experience into a combat and, alongside Handicap International’s team, he is taking part in risk education sessions with other children. 

Shahoud during a risk education session.

Shahoud during a risk education session. | © Handicap International

It all started during one of the risk education sessions run by Handicap International in northern Syria. The organisation’s professionals were visiting a school in a camp for displaced people. The children told them that one of their friends had lost his right hand a few months ago. “His name is Shahoud!”

Shahoud lives in the camp with fifteen family members. He had to leave his home town because it was coming under constant attack and because of his accident. When the organisation’s professionals met him, he shared his story with them: “I had found a bullet and I tried to open it. No one told me it might explode, even when it wasn’t in a gun I wanted to see what it contained and to understand how such a small object could kill so many people. I didn’t know...”

The risk education team once again realised how important their work was. The professionals spent the next hour explaining to Shahoud and his family how to deal with different types of explosive weapons. They also invited the children from the surrounding area to take part in the session. They responded with enthusiasm and asked a lot of questions. Then Shahoud asked the organisation’s professionals if he could join them as they went around the camp.

With his friends, he decided to create the “team of heroes”: a group of children who wanted to raise the awareness of others. Shahoud explained that his story could help others understand the impact of these weapons and even a simple bullet. “I would have liked to have met the organisation before my accident,” he says. Today, Shahoud and his friends want to make sure no other children go through the same experience. They join the organisation’s team as they make their way through the camp’s streets, explaining to others the risk of explosive weapons. And saving lives.

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