Sarah was like many girls you know, spending her days that August preparing for her last year in high school. But one morning in 2014 terror struck and her life was changed forever. You see, Sarah is a Yazidi and she lived in the Sinjar region of western Iraq. And that August morning at 11:00 am was when she met ISIS.
They heard that ISIS said they would spare villages if they hung white flags, so the people in her village followed their orders and remained in town. But instead, ISIS rounded up the people and took them to another village. Her family had two days together before the men and women were separated. Sarah and her mother were taken to Mosul where they were placed in a prison which hosted about 2,000 Yazidi girls.
There she was traded many times and then auctioned off to an ISIS leader and forced to marry him. She remained in his family’s home for a grueling seven months. The day eventually came in when the fighter decided to give her to his friend. It was 10am and she ran, not knowing where she was or which direction to go.
She stopped in a hospital and found a woman there who helped her find a cell phone shop. She didn’t have any money, but had kept a family heirloom hidden. She traded it for a cell phone and called the only numbers she remembered. Her friends contacted a smuggler and he managed to help Sarah make her way out.
Her entire family is still missing.
When asked what was her hope to get through this, she said, “I wanted to get back to help my grandmother and to finish school.”
More and more girls continue to escape ISIS like Sarah did, but their suffering is not over. Many arrive in the camp without anything and without family. They have been beaten, malnourished, and raped. Pray for our work in the camp as we seek for ways to help serve and and bring healing and hope.