Omar's Journey Back2School: An SSRF Success
My family and I are originally form Eastern Aleppo. We were forcibly displaced due to the constant bombardment. We then fled to Istanbul. It was really hard for me to leave home – I think it was even more difficult for my parents. I was scared and didn’t know what to expect – would we be welcomed? Would we continue going to school? I was anxious.
In Istanbul, my father found work as a tailor in a sewing workshop. His salary was very low and he was struggling to support our family. I started working part time with my father. Finally, it became necessary for me to stop going to school and to work full time to help support my family.
The Karam Team visited my family’s home last year. The staff emphasized how important school is and that in order for me to have a bright future, I must return to school. At the time, I didn’t think it was possible for me to go back to school – my family needed me. Karam Foundation’s Sponsor A Syrian Refugee Family (SSRF) program provided my family with a monthly cash stipend to help improve our living conditions so that I can quit work and return to school.
I was so excited to go back to school and continue my studies. In the future I hope to be a doctor, and I felt that this opportunity pushed me 1 step closer toward achieving my dream. I know my parents, especially my mom was excited for me. I remember her being so sad when I was working and not in school.
I love being in school. I study very hard. My grades are good and I work hard improve. Every month, I get to join other kids enrolled in the SSRF program for different activities with Karam Foundation. We took a field trip to the zoo once and also to a theme park.
I know my parents were both under a lot of pressure to provide for me and my sisters. Living in Syria was difficult, and being displaced to a new country was just as difficult. It was like we had to start over. The SSRF program really helped us move forward. It allowed me to go back to school and also allowed my parents the opportunity to get back on their feet. Since joining the program, my father was able to find new work, with a better salary.