Baladi - UNHCR
Terrified that he would be recruited into the army, he fled his home in Syria when he was just 15 years old. Saying farewell to his family – including his four-year-old sister Anmar who was crying and begging him not to go – left him feeling more alone than ever.
“I had to go,” says Numeir. “Saying goodbye was terrible. Anmar begged me not to go, saying ‘big brother, don’t go’. But I had no choice.”
Numeir travelled through Turkey, Greece and the Balkans, before finally reaching an uncle in Germany. By the time he arrived, in 2015, he was 16 and thousands of miles from his family.
As a child, Numeir was taken into custody by the authorities and eventually ended up in a hostel in Lensahn, a small town located in the northern most tip of Germany. It has less than 5,000 inhabitants and is just a few minutes by car from the Baltic Sea.
UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, helped Numeir with the process of family reunification. His father Ismain, mother Fada and three siblings had fled to Turkey, then to Greece, before finally hearing that their family reunification application had been approved.