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When I was little, not so long ago, my brother, Sami, our friends and I played on sunbaked soil. We laughed, ran across rocks and sand, free as birds. Then the birds stopped singing. People began to leave our village. First a trickle, then a stream, across dusty fields under a burning sun, a stream driven by hope. Mothers, fathers, children, seeking a better place, a better life.Rama and her family are forced to leave behind everything they know and love. With only what they can carry on their backs, Rama's family sets out to find refuge in Europe. Syrian artist Nizar Ali Badr's stunning stone images illustrate Margriet Ruurs's thoughtful and moving story.