News sites and even video images cannot convey the day-to-day stress and hardship of what it means to be a refugee. Those who have experienced such sudden and desperate separation from home can relate and retell experiences, but for those of us who live in relative comfort and security are left to imagine — or ignore — the plight of thousands upon thousands of families experiencing this right now. Today.
A Montclair resident and business owner, Hala Ghanem, is hosting a Humanwire fundraiser for one family of refugees from Syria, currently living in Lebanon. Hala, who is from Lebanon, felt drawn to this family because of her own childhood experiences.
I grew up in Beirut during the civil war in the 80s and know first-hand what it feels like to lose one’s home and belongings as a result of war. It is something that no child or adult can easily overcome. It was 26 years ago, right before Christmas, that I lost my childhood home to a bomb with all its memories and sweet smells. In memory of that, I am dedicating this campaign to help Soad and Yousra’s family. I hope you will help me raise enough money to see this family through the winter.
Hala’s fundraiser is for a family with young teenagers, and the two daughters, Soad (13) and Yousra (12), are featured. She is hoping to raise a total of $4750 to help the family buy basic supplies of “food, blankets, diesel oil and wood” as requested by the family. Imagine desiring just these basic needs as we wrap up the “season of giving” with our families.
Please consider sponsoring Soad and Yousra’s family; donations are secure and start at $5! One of the most popular “rewards” for donations has been a live video chat with both the host and refugee, complete with translator if needed. Skim through and see what best fits your wallet. Thank you!
postscript: I wrote this post about violence in Syria almost four years ago. Imagine living with this kind of violence and fear and instability for that long. Imagine it for your children.