Open Doors Enables Mimi’s Family to Stay in Iraq

IRAQ — Mimi (12) was very young when she fled her home in Bartella with her grandparents after so-called Islamic State invaded the Nineveh Plains. Until recently, Mimi’s parents were considering leaving Iraq – until they received a microloan to set up a farm through Open Doors partners.


“I love Iraq, because it is my country and I was born in it. I don’t want to leave. When Islamic state came and attacked Iraq I was sad about Iraq and asked why they did this.”

12-year-old Mimi is too young to remember all the details when Islamic State fighters invaded the Nineveh Plains in 2014. But she does recall fleeing with her grandparents from the town of Bartella that they used to call home.


“I was sleeping. And when I woke up I saw my grandfather and grandmother sitting there looking scared. I asked grandpa: ‘What’s wrong? Let’s go out for a little bit.’ They didn’t say anything. They said: ‘Later.’

“Then I saw them when we were in the car. I saw them going up to our place. I asked grandpa: ‘Where are we going?’ He said: ‘We’re just travelling.’ So we went and we reached a place, an apartment. We sat down and nana put on some cartoons on the TV, so we wouldn’t be scared.”

Even since Islamic State was driven out in 2017, many Iraqi Christians have chosen to leave the country. Mimi’s family also considered emigrating, until they heard about a microloan scheme supported by Open Doors partners. They received a loan and started a sheep farm about 30 miles north of Mosul. Mimi keeps chickens and loves to share what she has with her neighbours.”


“I have raised my chickens since they were little. I love them. At 7 o’clock in the morning, I collect the eggs from them. And in the afternoon at 4 o’clock, I also collect their eggs. Then someone might come who doesn’t have eggs and who wants eggs. He doesn’t have any he wants some little chicks. And I would give them to him so that he could raise them and they would become like my chickens. If someone would love to have chickens I would give them to him so that he would have chickens like me.

“I love this area. We are all brothers and sisters. We all know each other. I wouldn’t like to leave this place because first I have my chickens and second I have my friends.”

About Open Doors UK

For over 60 years, Open Doors UK has worked in the world’s most oppressive countries, empowering Christians who are persecuted for their beliefs. Open Doors equips persecuted Christians in more than 60 countries through programs like Bible & Gospel Development, Women & Children Advancement, and Christian Community Restoration.

Read more news on Compassion Services and Christian Persecution on Missions Box.

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