A group of Japanese university students are pitching for donations via crowdfunding to support two boys suffering childhood cancer in war-torn Syria.

The boys are Salah, 10, and Ibraheem, 9, who the students got to know through a nongovernmental organization. They are fighting the disease in Aleppo, northern Syria, and are unable to receive adequate treatment.

Syrian boy Ibraheem (L) receives treatment at a hospital in Aleppo, Syria, in February 2021. (Photo courtesy of Ibraheem's family)(Kyodo)

The students began their activities last year and have set a goal of 700,000 yen ($6,350) for this year. The money will be used for medical treatment for the boys and their travel expenses to hospitals.

Tamami Yoshioka, a sophomore at Tokyo University of Foreign Studies whose major is Arabic, has been participating in the project since last winter.

Making use of her language skills, Yoshioka, 22, has been exchanging messages with the boys' families, and she said she feels an acute need for assistance.

In addition to health conditions of the boys, she was informed of the harsh life of Syrian citizens under economic sanctions.

Yoshioka and other students said that under the global coronavirus pandemic, many people are in difficult situations, but the group does not want to unilaterally scale back international cooperation.

So far, the students have reached this year's goal of donations, but they are seeking more support and will be accepting donations until late in the evening on Monday.

More information is available at https://readyfor.jp/projects/team_beko_syria

Supplied photo shows Syrian boy Salah showing off his drawing at home in Aleppo, Syria, in May 2020. (Photo courtesy of Salah's family)(Kyodo)