Rest in Peace

Our dear friend Cathy Kuipers passed away on 27 March, 2019 in Brisbane, Australia.
Cathy was one of the founding members of Operation Hope Australia and quickly jumped at the opportunity to volunteer in refugee camps in Greece in September 2016. She then joined us volunteering at the Hassan Sham U2 camp for internally displaced people near Mosul, Iraq in May, 2017. Cathy continued to be involved in the financial side of our activites up until the time of her death. We miss her enthusiasm, her jest for life and wicked sense of humour. Cathy had a real heart for refugees both in Australia and overseas.
Our sincere sympathy to her daughter Cara and family.

Your life was a blessing,
your memory a treasure,
you are loved beyond words
and missed beyond measure.



Life in Bajed Kandala Camp

This week:

  • Unpacking a suitcase of donated medical supplies in the nurses office in the camp
  • 5 English classes per day
  • Shopping for educational resources
  • Picking up student workbooks from printer
  • Buying beautiful fabrics for the sewing group
  • Experiencing wonderful hospitality today – a banquet made lovingly by the family of one of our English students in his home
  • Washing, shopping, cooking and sleeping at our apartment in Duhok

At the English classes at Baged Kandala…..some of the students have been waiting for 2 years to learn English. They are so diligent, punctual and respectful…..they are a joy to teach.



Zahra is 7 years old and lives with her mother and brother in the Khazir camp 25 kms east of Mosul.  Zahra cannot hear, is not responding verbally and is becoming withdrawn which is impacting her education. She has been referred to Erbil twice and each time the doctor has said that she requires a hearing aid.

Zahra’s father left the family and is living in Mosul and will not support the family. Her mother has no income and is unable to pay for the hearing aid. Additionally, Zahra’s brother has been injured and requires leg surgery.  I will post a separate blog about her brother once we know more details and cost of his surgery.

The cost of the hearing aid will be a one off cost.  A cheap hearing aid will cost USD350 although it would be fantastic to purchase a good hearing aid but the cost is USD2200. Please help to restore the gift of hearing to Zahra by donating towards a hearing aid.

Thank you for taking the time to read Zahra’s story.






Unnamed pregnant mother – Medication funded.

A young mother with one child and 8 months pregnant with her second child was in need of medication prescribed by the doctor in the medical clinic in Khazir camp.

Due to generous donations to Operation Hope,  Darya, our team member in Erbil, purchased the 10 injections for this mother costing USD70.

Darya, will oversee the care of this mother as well as during and after the birth of her second child.  Tragically, this mother is in an abusive relationship but we will do all we can to make sure she and her children are safe and have all they need.  Darya will take me to meet this mother, her child and new baby when I travel to Iraq in March.  I will take  special items for each of them when I visit.

Please donate if you would like to help fund special items for this mother, child and her new baby.  I would like to purchase personal items for the mother including a dress and toiletries, a game or toy for the young child and baby clothes for the new baby.  Other items would be nappies, fresh fruit and any medications they require.