Christy Delafield arrived in Mosul last weekend, days shy of the official announcement that the war for the battle-torn Iraqi city had come to a close.
When you’re a senior global communications officer with Mercy Corps, you get to call things like that a business trip instead of a coincidence.
Delafield, a native of State College, has spent her workweek catching up with some of the people whose families, homes and livelihoods became collateral damage in the crossfire between Iraqi soldiers and the Islamic State forces they pushed out of the city.
There are some people who just don’t really know what’s next.
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“There are some people who just don’t really know what’s next,” Delafield said.
That’s why Mercy Corps is there — or why Mercy Corps is anywhere, really.
The humanitarian organization has been sending water trucks, household essentials and money into the city’s west side, which Delafield described as facing near complete devastation.
There’s no water or electricity — and for some, no family left to reconnect with at home, if home still exists.
You hear harrowing stories every day and then you hear glimmers of hope that keep you going.
“You hear harrowing stories every day and then you hear glimmers of hope that keep you going,” Delafield said.
She’s encountered a lot of hope in the past few days, children who still dream of learning to play an instrument or a woman who rolled up her sleeves and began baking and selling bread out of her home in the wake of her husband’s death.
Delafield is hoping that the crisis faced by Mosul’s refugees can draw the attention of the outside world despite a crowded news landscape.
“I really have come to love this place and care about the people, and I found them pretty inspiring,” Delafield said.
Those interested can contribute to Mercy Corps’ humanitarian mission by visiting https://www.mercycorps.org/donate/humanitarian-response-fund.