The Dohuk Housing Complex Project has been the largest single project embarked upon by the Assyrian Church of the East Relief Organization since its founding. In February 2010 work began on this major project to provide cost-free accommodation to Assyrians internally displaced from the major Iraqi conflict zones of Baghdad, Mosul (Nineveh) and Kirkuk. These areas, affected by significant sectarian fighting and security instability have seen their Assyrian communities reduced since 2003 with major population shifts to the Northern Iraqi provinces.
The project commenced with the endowment of 5000 square meters of land in the eastern part of Dohuk City by the Governorate of Dohuk. On the land four buildings were constructed and completed in October 2010. Each building has four floors with two apartments on each floor. Each apartment is 107 square meters in size and is appointed with two bedrooms, a hall/reception area, a kitchen and a bathroom. Two apartments in Building 4 are set aside as a medical clinic and ACERO’s Dohuk Chapter Office is located in Building 1. Although the construction of the complex was completed in October 2010, water and electricity was only connected by the local authorities in July 2012 paving the way for occupants to take up residence in 3 of the 4 apartment buildings. The families occupying the apartments were determined by a select committee assessing those most in need with 10 apartments currently occupied by widowed mothers and families. The occupants do not pay any rental but a nominal monthly contribution of 75,000 Iraqi Dinars (approximately $US65.00) for the general upkeep of the facilities and maintenance of the exterior.
From the ACERO Dohuk Chapter Office located at the site, food, material and financial aid is distributed to the occupants on a regular basis. At the same time, mobile medical teams frequently visit the Complex to assess the health of the occupants and provide medications as required. The total project cost was $US1 million with support from ACERO’s international institutional relief project partners, European churches, the Governorate of Duhok, Iraqi Kurdistan (through the officer of the Deputy-Governor Mr Shlemon Gewargis) and private donors.