Here I have various items from Lootcrates and five books for the bookgeeks out there. This is not one of my typical giveaways, as it is going to be donation based. As some of my readers already know, I recently participated in GISHWHES, which is supported by the charity Random Acts of Kindness.
During the week, part of our items was to raise money for Syrian refugee families. We ended up blasting the goal of $150,000 to over $200,000 and instead of just two families we were able to help four. Here’s two of their stories:
First, we invite you to join us in changing the life of Khouloud, her husband and 4 children:
Khouloud was shot by a sniper and paralyzed from the neck down in 2012 while she was tending to her garden: “I had tried to plant a small area of land near our house, as it wasn’t possible to get vegetables like before. I was going to take care of the plants with my four children and suddenly a bullet hit my neck and I fell down and lost sensation. I could not move anymore. The children started shouting and yelling.”
Her family fled the country and managed to get her out of Syria. They found themselves living in a tented settlement in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley, one of thousands of such unofficial camps dotted across the country.
UNHCR provides minimal food coupons, but the family is struggling and there is almost no health care available for Khouloud. Khouloud’s husband has to provide her with 24-hour care as well as tending to their four young children. For two years, Khouloud has not moved from her bed, staring at the ceiling of the small shack that they live in. Even in these deplorable conditions and circumstances, they continue to create some semblance of “home.” War Correspondent Giles Duley, who first shared their story with us and continues to visit them bringing them support and global attention, communicated that: “Khouloud remains eternally positive and smiles, and her husband, Jamal, still looks at her with the love he did when they first met. The children do their homework on the bed with their mother and they always eat together.”
It’s hard to think of a home more filled with love and compassion, despite incredibly difficult circumstances. Khouloud’s simple wish?
“To be a mother again,” she said. “I wish I could move my fingers because sometimes my son is injured outside and he comes in next to me. He moves my hand and he puts my fingers onto the wound. I wish I could move my fingers to touch the wound and make him feel like I am feeling it with him.”
Second, we invite you to join us in supporting Khawla Yassine and her family. Their story is equally heartbreaking:
Khawla, 12-years old, lives in Lebanon in a camp with her mother, Sana, and her sister and 5 brothers (two of them have serious disabilities). Their father is missing and presumed dead in Syria.
Her mother and 15-year old sister used to work in a salt factory, but they were let go as the factory didn’t have enough work for them. To add insult to injury, while frying food in their tent, they accidentally burned the tent down, losing everything— even their clothes. They found a bare-bones tent structure to move into temporarily but had dwindling resources for food, water, and health care.
At this point, 12-year old Khawla made the choice to consume poison. She later explained her reason to attempt suicide to her mother: ‘Mama, there are seven of us and you work and work to feed us, but you can’t keep up. Without me, there will be one less person to feed.’ She spent 13 days in intensive care.
She is out of the hospital, but the family is in dire need of support. Khawla also has two disabled brothers; 6-year old Mohamad, who has an intestinal disease, and Ahmad, an 8-year old suffering from a blood disease that inhibits his ability to speak.
These are tragic stories, but together, we are going to profoundly change their lives!
Random Acts and GISHWHES are joining forces to help these families, but we need your help. With your support, we can help provide Khouloud, Mohamad, and Ahmad with medical care. We can move both of these families into apartments and provide nutritional support and education for the children.
We’re raising money for combined support for both families:
$1200 monthly rent to move them into clean and safe apartments
$500 monthly physiotherapist/care support for Khouloud and the Khawla’s two brothers
$600 monthly bills/living costs (this will mean Khouloud’s eldest boy can stop working and go back to school).
$7000 one-time fee – estimated for Khouloud to visit a spinal specialist and receive medical evaluation (including an MRI) to determine how to alleviate her suffering.
We plan on supporting these families for as many years as we can through gishwhes and Random Acts. One day we hope to send these children to college. We will be updating everyone on an on-going basis.
The goal of this “giveaway” is to raise money to support more refugee families through Random Acts. Always remember, A Little Is A Lot!
Donations are not required to enter, but it is the main goal of this giveaway, so please keep that in mind.
Anyone in the US 14 and up can enter, under 14 with parental permission. Winners will be randomly chosen and prizes will be chosen by the winners on first come, first serve basis. You will be sent an email and given 48 hours to respond before another winner will be chosen. Good luck!