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Syrian Refugee: 'Our Life Has Become Unbearable Hell'

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Image: Letters handed to a UNHCR worker at the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan by a 21-year-old Syrian refugee.
Letters handed to a UNHCR worker at the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan by a 21-year-old Syrian refugee.UNHCR - Nasreddine Touaibia

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During aid worker Nasreddine Touaibia's routine walk through Jordan's Zaatari camp, home to 80,000 refugees, a young man gave him a handwritten letter.

The author, a 21-year-old Syrian, arrived at Zaatari camp two years ago with his parents and younger sister after fleeing the brutal civil war. He describes how he was forced to abandon his studies in Damascus and the pain felt by himself and his sister.

"This long period of false promises to continue our study and to make up for the lost time made us really hopeless and despaired," he writes. "My sister, who has spent three bitter successive years without study, sheds tears day by night. She is a pitiful state lying in the caravan."

Image: Letters handed to a UNHCR worker at the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan by a 21-year-old Syrian refugee.
Letters handed to a UNHCR worker at the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan by a 21-year-old Syrian refugee.UNHCR - Nasreddine Touaibia

Touaibia, a UN refugee agency worker, told NBC News that the author -- who wants to remain anonymous for now -- won a UN-provided DAFI scholarship about 10 days ago, to which thousands of refugees applied but only 40 were selected.

The young man, who cleans floors to support his family, approached Touaibia and asked that the agency instead give the scholarship to his sister. After a lot of “counseling” from UNHCR workers, he agreed to take the scholarship but is still hoping that something can be done for his sister.

"I felt like it's a guy fighting for his future and I shared it so that the world will know that refugees are human beings, with ambitions and plans for their future," said Touaibia, who was was moved to tears by the letter.

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