Before the US-led invasion in 2003, about 1.5 million Christian lived in Iraq. Now less than 250,000 remain, many of whom have been displaced from their homes in the north of the country by the advance of Islamic State (Isis).
In July 2014 the extremist militants issued a decree that all Christians living in areas of its control must convert to Islam or face death. Thousands fled their homes, having time only to grab one or two small items. These treasured possessions have become more precious the longer they are forced to stay away from their homes, friends and families.
Photographer Matt Cardy visited a refugee camp in Erbil and spoke to former residents of the Christian town of Qaraqosh. He asked them what was the one thing they could not bear to leave behind, apart from their families.
This article was first published
on February 6, 2015