Asmar Halabi: We are afraid of bombing day and night. Photograph: Hussein Akoush for the Guardian figcaption > generator >
We have four more children in the orphanage now, because an airstrike killed one of our staff and her husband this week. She was called Alia Nasser, she was 32 and operated as a maid.
Everything is getting worse, with the aerial onslaughts and deficits from the siege. One bomb hit only 50 meters away, the dust filled the air so you couldnt see anything. Its the worst ever attack, altogether unprecedented. I ascertained one crater that was five metres deep.
We are afraid of bombing day and night. When the planes go, I tell the babysitters and boss to take the children down to the bunker, but they can still hear the bombs arrival. Some of them have got used to these clangs, but many scream, and a few of them are so frightened they wet themselves.
We are just devouring the same type of meat at every dinner lentil soup and a kind of cracked bulgar wheat and our stocks are running out.
My biggest fear is that the siege will continue for a long time, because we have to feed 50 “childrens and” over 20 faculty, and I always continue worrying about what tomorrow will bring, “ve been thinking about” the deficits. I always scrutinize everything myself, got to make sure nothing is missing.
Because of the incessant aerial bombardment, artillery shelling and mortar shelling, I just stay inside at the orphanage or at home. I only really go out when I need to get something for myself, or when I need to pick up an orphan at special courts or hand them over to a guardian.
I often dont leave the orphanage until around 10 pm. Before the siege, when there was a real market, I used to go shopping with my spouse, but these days I just have dinner then sit and talk under LED lightings for a bit.
I get up again around nine or 10, drink a bowl of coffee and then go back to the orphanage again, examined the daily situation with faculty, perhaps talk through some sensitive issues with the teenagers or play with the smaller children.
Actually, because of the siege and the bombing, the orphanage takes up all my day. I feel guilty about my spouse but she welcoming the fact that I am working for vulnerable offsprings, and supports that my work is my priority.
Sometimes she comes with me to the orphanage, is assisting and play with “their childrens”. We dont want them to get bored.
Aleppo city and governorate: the current areas of control
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