Syrian refugee Halima Taha (30), fled fighting near her home in Latakia four years ago, together with her husband Fadi Sayed Ahmad (40) and three children – Hamza (4), Bourhan (9) and Kamala (10). Arriving in Germany, they volunteered to move to Golzow, a tiny village on the German-Polish border.
Over the past eight years alone, Golzow’s population shrank by 12%, to just 835 people. Then, in March 2015, the unthinkable happened. For the first time since it opened in 1961, the school failed to make up the pupil numbers required for a reception class.
Back then, the village’s shrinking population meant bad news for Golzow’s primary school, known by film fans the world over as the setting for “The Children of Golzow,” an epic 42-hour documentary filmed over five decades.
Although they were a little older than their classmates, three young newcomers joined the reception class, pushing numbers over the required minimum of 15. It was win-win, the year group was saved and the Syrians got a new home.
Kamala Sayed Ajmad (10) is a bright pupil and has now been promoted from her introductory reception class up into the third grade, where her favourite subjects are maths, music and sport.
Here: Kamala (center) during a sports lesson.
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