As the war erupted in Syria which led to the displacement of a large number of families, begging has increased and spread to unprecedented limits, and it is striking that the presence of beggars continues to the late hours of night, where some of them are young, male and female, in addition to people with special needs. To shed more light on this phenomenon, North-Press surveyed the opinions of the citizens, social officials and others on begging.
Bassam Selkan, a citizen said that he can only sympathize with them, especially children and the elderly: “Don't give me money buy me a sandwich, which has became reiterated by the majority of beggars which summarizes a lot and warns a lot, and these people do not lie, but they have circumstances that forced them to do so.”
North-Press tried to interview some beggars to form a broader idea of their suffering, but most of them were fleeing except for some of them. Wael Ismail said, “We have been displaced twice, once from Latakia and once from al-Kabbas (neighborhood in Damascus) while my brother and my father died, our situation got worse, moreover I'm sick and I can't work.”
When he was asked about the amount of money he gets daily, he said: "I sit here all day until late at night then I go back to my mother and sister, having 2,000 Syrian pounds.”
Damascus - Shaimaa (13 years old), she was sitting on the sidewalk with her two younger brothers on a blanket of humanitarian aid provided by the U.N., she said: “We were displaced twice and now we rent a room; my mother works in cleaning the buildings, but what she gets is not enough for the rent of our room, so I try to help her with the expenses.”
Nour Ahmed Qatna, when asked why she was begging in the streets, she answered: “We were displaced from Al-Dumayr, in the eastern countryside of Damascus, since a long time ago and my father died, I left school at the fifth grade. I go out with my brother and sister every day to get our food because my mother can't work."
The social activist Rama Dunya told North-Press: "We are tired until we persuaded more than one child to go to social welfare homes or orphanages, according to his situation, but we were surprised by them after a few days on the street again.” She added that the reason for this is entrenching the street mentality in the head of children, or it may be pressure on them from their operators, or perhaps unfair treatment by the care home, she concluded that the main solution to this problem is to rid children and their parents of lack and need, which is the responsibility of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labour.