The Moral Obligation to Help – Hungarian Volunteers for Refugees

Hungarians hate refugees. This is what one could believe from the picture the media has drawn of the country’s actions. The truth is though, while Viktor Orbán has been trying to keep refugees out of the country, most of it‘s citizens have been welcoming them with open arms. Their willingness to help those in need shows a side to Hungary, that the rest of the world has been willingly overlooking for the last few months.



Video by Susanne Gottlieb (Austria) and Johan Fuglsang (Denmark)


Syrians plunged into darkness

Four years of brutal conflict have plunged Syrians into the dark and many live without any electricity, which then led them to flee out of Syria, hoping to find light at the end of the tunnel. And the contrast between Syria in 2011 and today is visible from space. Since March 2011, 83% of the lights in Syria have gone out, based on satellite images analysed by scientists at Wuhan University in China.

In a press conference held earlier on this year, the project lead researcher Xi Li, stated that the research confirms the fear of the Syrian inhabitants.

Taken from 500 miles above the earth, these images help us understand the suffering and fear experienced by ordinary Syrians every day, as their country is destroyed around them, he said in the press statement.

Also 97% of the lights has gone out in Aleppo, the largest city in Syria. The streets, homes, schools and hospitals has been plunged and gradually extinguishing hope. The provinces of Damascus and Quneitra is the exeptions where the decline in light as been between 35 and 47%.

Have you ever imagined?

During the training Diversity Voices in Budapest 2015, organized by European Youth Press, we switched off the lights for participants, in order to capture their reaction when they find themselves plunged into darkness. Although it did not affect everyone in the same way, some found it difficult to continue working in the dark and wanted to resolve the problem.

It is certain that humanity is dependent on electricity, as it provides us with the power to do almost everything that we want , but what can one do when electricity is not present?

If you just watched this video it means that you have some source of energy. Most probably you just watched this video on your laptop or desktop computer plugged into a socket and you didn’t even bother what it would feel like if you were unable to read this article just because you do not have any electricity to do so. I bet you also have your mobile phone charging at the moment or you’re planning to do so because your battery is going down and you just feel helpless without it so you just plug it in, knowing that it would charge.

And regardless of where you are around the world, you might be feeling hot or cold, so you just need to switch on your fan or heater, just to feel comfortable, just because you have electricity. And I bet you could really make some coffee or just heat some food in the microwave and sit comfortably in front of your TV or laptop. Sure, you need electricity to do that.

What would you do if the privilege of having electricity was taken away from you?

We are sure that just by a quick glance you have noticed how much we are dependent on electricity and we could only imagine what life really feels like when you lack electricity.

Short facts to know about electricity in Syria

  • 83% of lights went off across Syria since March 2011.
  • 97% of lights went off in Aleppo, northern Syria largest city
  • 35% of lights went off in the Governorate of Damascus, the second-largest city of Syria after Aleppo.
  • Over 200 000 people killed since 2011
  • 9 million out of 22 million people have fled their homes

Source: The movement #WithSyria

Report by Jessica Camilleri (Malta), Hovnan Baghdasaryan (Armenia), Sandra Rönnsved (Sweden) and Milica Ciric (Serbia)