Message of hope: Unicef releases powerful charity song by Syrian children

15th March 2017

Ansam (10) performs ‘Song for Syria’ with a choir of internally displaced children

 

*NOTE* Video stills and an introduction to the song’s video available for download here

DUBLIN/BEIRUT/DAMASCUS, 15 March 2017 – UNICEF has this morning released ‘Song for Syria’ a powerful new song and music video performed by children affected by six years of war in Syria.

The song is a message of hope from Syria’s children to the people of the world, with a simple request to get their childhood back.

‘Song for Syria’ is sung by 10-year-old Ansam, a Syrian girl who was born blind, against a backdrop of a city devastated by conflict. The video was filmed in Syria.

The children who perform alongside Ansam are all internally displaced and participate, along with Ansam, in UNICEF psychosocial support programmes.

The song was written and composed by Zaid Dirani, Unicef Goodwill Ambassador, and world-famous pianist, who donated it to UNICEF.

The release of the song comes in the week that marks six years of war in Syria. On Monday, UNICEF confirmed 2016 was the worst year of the conflict for Syrian children with violations against them the highest on record.

Verified instances of killing, maiming and recruitment of children increased sharply last year in a drastic escalation of violence across the country:

The lyrics of ‘Heartbeat, a song for Syria’ lyrics are reproduced here:

Amid destruction and fire, our wound is deep

 

We want to say it loud, but our voice is weak

We may be children, but our cry comes from the heart

We want to erase fear and be the change

We want to say it loud: everything is possible

 

Someone listen, someone hear

We want our childhood back

Together we can hope

We will be stronger and grow

With pain, fear and tears we write this song

Our hearts beat back to life

 

Our faces will glow and light this long darkness

Dreams we built together will all come true

We want to say it loud: everything is possible

 

Someone listen, someone hear

We want our childhood back

Together we can hope

We will be stronger and grow

With pain, fear and tears we write this song

Our hearts are beating again

 

Our smiles are everywhere

Our hearts are beating again

Together we can hope

We will be stronger and grow

With pain, fear and tears we write this song

 

Our hearts beat back to life

back to life

 

The most vulnerable Syrian children are the 2.8 million caught in hard-to-reach areas, including 280,000 children living under siege who are almost completely cut off from humanitarian aid.

After six years of war, nearly six million children now depend on humanitarian assistance, a twelve-fold increase from 2012. Millions of children have been displaced, some up to seven times. Over 2.3 million children are now living as refugees in Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt and Iraq.

On behalf of the children of Syria, UNICEF is appealing to all parties to the conflict, those who have influence over them, the international community and anyone who cares about children for:

UNICEF is seeking just over US$1 billion to help Syrian children and families seeking refuge from the war in neighbouring countries, and US$354 million to provide life-saving assistance to half the population of Syria.

ENDS

*Notes to Editors*

‘Heartbeat – a song for Syria’ is now available for immediate publication.

UNICEF’s publication Hitting Rock Bottom, along with broadcast quality b-roll, videos from children in Syria, and photos is available here

To donate to the children of Syria, please visit our website.

About UNICEF

UNICEF promotes the rights and well-being of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere. UNICEF has been operating for 70 years.

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For more information, please contact:

Aedín Donnelly, Communications and Media Manager for UNICEF Ireland | aedin@unicef.ie | Tel: +353 1 809 0281 | Mob: +353 85 1395272