I recently visited Istanbul, a Turkish city filled with Syrian refugees. Some old, some young but each with the same horror story of leaving behind dead friends and family in Syria. Their journeys to Istanbul are filled with difficulty and danger. Once arrived in Istanbul, most were not welcomed with open arms. Turkish people have a sense of pride towards their culture and history and many feel that the influx of refugees will change their identity. Many stores in Turkey refuse to speak to you in anything but Turkish for fear of their language being replaced with Arabic. Lots of Landlords refuse to lease apartments to Syrian refugees and most employers will discriminate against Syrians or not hire them at all.
One of the Syrian refugees I met was a young man in his mid-20s, married with two children of his own and supporting four other relatives. He worked 10-12 hour days, six days a week with no benefits for roughly $300 a month. This does not even provide the basic needs for his family, but they survive. His wage is less than a quarter of what his Turkish peers would make for the same job. When I spoke with him he told me he felt lucky and blessed to at least have some sort of income.
The children in the streets of Istanbul are plenty. All wander attempting to sell simple items such as napkins, pencils or candy. Some cannot afford to buy those items to sell so they just ask for anything from any passerby. They wear the expressions of children robber of childhood; their faces tell an excruciating story without uttering a word.