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november 2015


November 8 - 13  Reyhanli, Turkey
 Ruwwad School for Syrian Refugees

40 mentors 750 students (grades 1-12)

This was our seventh Karam mission, led by over 40 mentors traveling from around the world, serving over 700 Syrian students, grades 1 - 12, who are currently displaced along the Syrian-Turkish border.

The purpose behind Innovative Education is to creatively approach solutions to child trauma. In partnership with local Syrian schools, our program focuses on serving the health and psycho-social needs of refugee students, because educating also requires healing from the trauma of war and displacement. Our multi-talented team of mentors are experienced in working with children and are dedicated to their learning and development. 

Teens were introduced to the basic ideas about entrepreneurship and prepare them for a computer driven world. Students with an interest in a tech career had the opportunity to learn these skills and eventually find paying jobs.  

Karam’s Medical Director from Chicago along with a DC-based pediatrician worked with a local ophthalmologist to provide holistic health care and vision screenings for the students. There was also a special segment on women’s health led by a OBGYN Resident to help foster young women’s sense of self and how to be a potential leader for change. 

Our team of 4 US-based, top-rated dentists and doctors ran the mobile dental clinic which includes check-ups, teeth cleanings, fillings and caries control, extractions and emergency tooth care for the students. They also led a dental and personal hygiene awareness workshop which trained the kids how to brush, educated them on the importance of brushing, and provided each child with a personal dental/hygiene kit.


Other workshops included:

PSYCHO-SOCIAL SUPPORT: Led by a special Education Consultant and a Psychologist who worked with both students and teachers. Teachers had the opportunity to learn different strategies that can be used to support all students, including those with challenging behaviors. 

SPORTS/ SELF-DEFENSE: Led by professional martial arts experts, to help empower boys/girls. This workshop included physical techniques as well as mental and spiritual training, aimed to build confidence and promote self-empowerment.

CULINARY ARTS: Students learned practical skills in the kitchen and also work on team-building and how to create a business by selling baked goods.

FILMMAKING: Students learned how to shoot footage, set up a scene, and how to make a short film. The goal of the workshop was to instill storytelling and self-expression skills through the art of film.

ART MURAL: Led by an acclaimed muralist from South Africa who designed and guided the students to paint a final art piece on the school wall.

MAPPING OUR HOME: Led by an architect, students drew floor plans of their home in Syria from memory or imagined their homes in the future. The goal of this workshop was to preserve fleeting memories of home and encourage imagining a positive future.

DESIGN LAB AND CRAFTS: Led by a renowned artists and interior designers, children made dreamcatchers to capture their bad dreams. They also used recycled materials and paint to create "imaginary pets" to take home. 

JOURNALISM: Led by internationally renowned writers and journalists, students learned how to conduct interviews and tell a story from a neutral perspective.

PHILOSOPHY/ ANTIGONE READING: Students learned how to approach problems philosophically and do a reading and performance of Sophocles' Antigone.

STUDENT COUNCIL:  The importance of democracy and empowering students to take initiatives in their own school, including speech making and elections.

TRANSLATION TEAM: Karam Foundation is proud to hire a group of four young Syrians as translators for our mentors. This motivated group traveled from Syria to Turkey to join us. They also learned skills and techniques from our mentors to take back to children who live inside Syria.

Long-Term Investment in the School

Computer lab (15 desktops, projector, screen, desks, chairs, laptop for instructor), laptops for the teachers, kitchen appliances, interior paint for entire school, interior mural.

Planned Investments

Fix bathrooms, fix all doors and create partitions between adjoining classrooms, provide monthly supplies of cleaning and stationary needs for the school.



(DATES) • Reyhanli, Turkey
Karam Computer Lab at the Salam School

4 mentors 20 students (grades 10-12)


Former NYT journalist Hala Droubi recruited refugee teens who expressed interest in journalism when she visited the KLP November 2014 mission and kept in touch with them for 10 months. She sent them articles to read and summarize and gave them short writing assignments that she would read and give feedback. In Fall 2015, Hala returned to the Salam School with three international journalist friends and a videographer to conduct an advanced journalism course for 15 of the best students who qualified for the course based on their correspondence with Hala. They learned about finding a news source, interviewing people, completing a story, and making a video story which they completed together. 

After the mission ended, Hala secured 4 students with a 4-month internship in Istanbul at a Syrian newspaper, Sada Al-Sham. She also crowdfunded their travel and living expenses to cover the internship. One of the students, Ahmad Saflo from Aleppo, just published a front-page story in the newspaper last month! We met two of the boys in Istanbul and they were thrilled to see us and give us a copy of the newspaper.

Journalism has now become one of our core “career paths” that we implement into every mission. Hala Droubi leads the journalism component of our Innovative Education programming and we continue to add new journalists (including non-Syrians) to the list of potential mentors.



april 2015


April 29 - May 2 • Reyhanli, Turkey
Karam Computer Lab at the Salam School

5 of mentors) •50 students (grades 10-12)

creative therapy & holistic wellness

April 29 - May 2 • Reyhanli, Turkey
The Jeel School for Syrian Refugees

35 of mentors •500 students (grades 1-9)



Dental clinic which included check-ups, teeth, cleanings, fillings and caries control, extractions and emergency tooth care for the students. They also lead a dental and personal hygiene awareness workshop which trains the kids how to brush; educates them on the importance of brushing; and provides each child with a personal dental/hygiene kit. 

A pediatrition worked with a local ophthalmologist to provide holistic health care and vision screening for the students. They have also provided the school with baseline and permanent medical records for the students. 

A variety of sports workshops and physical activities that also teach students proper ways of exercising and maintaining a healthy physical and mental state. 

A yoga instructor lead workshops for students on the basics of
stretching, breathing, and mindfulness. 



This diverse series of workshops will focus on self-expression, creativity, and experimentation -activities including letter writing, calligraphy, quilting, illustration, and origami. 

Muralists Molly Crabapple and Fred led students in the creation of indoor and outdoor murals. Students learned new painting techniques, as well as practice creativity and collaboration. Their contributions are permanent art installations in the Jeel School. 

Photographers be introduced to the basics of photography for both creative and documentary purposes. Students had the opportunity to practice and experiment with their new skills, as well as learn the mechanics of different cameras and photo processing techniques. 


Writer and blogger, Wassim Al-Adel, alongside Lilah Khoja, will be running journal writing workshops 

for the children to help them develop their language arts abilities. Their work aims to instill healthy 

habits of recording feelings and memories and how to use writing for self-expression. 


Mohamad Ojjeh will be leading the Zeitouna documentation team which includes photography, film, 

writing, and social media coverage. Our mentors who are writers will be covering Zeitouna for 

intentional media.


Karam Foundation is proud to hire a group of four young Syrians as translators for our Zeitouna 

mentors. This motivated group of will travel from Syria to Turkey to join us. They also learn skills and 

techniques from our mentors to take back to children who live inside Syria.













This was our second KLP mission, a follow-up to our successful fall 2014 mission for Syrian refugee teens, continued with the 50 students under KLP mentor, Mohanad Ghashim, who provided an intensive four-day job training course. 14 Syrian refugee students (8 boys and 6 girls) with an interest in a tech career were offered fair-waged tech jobs for the summer at Mohanad Ghashim's company, ShopGo. The kids worked remotely from Karam’s fully-equipped computer lab that we built in November 2014 in the Salam School in Reyhanli.

The lab currently serves over 1400 students at the Salam School where they learn computer literacy, gain computer skills, and access the internet for research and online learning tools as well as learn to use social media as a tool for global communication. The lab also provides a creative and open space for innovative workshops like the Advanced KLP Journalism workshop we conducted in Fall 2015.





DATES • Reyhanli, Turkey
Karam Computer Lab at the Salam School

20 mentors • 350 students (grades 1-9)

JUNE 2014


DATES•Reyhanli, Turkey
The Salam School

40 mentors 650 students (grades 1-9)



DATES•Reyhanli, Turkey
The Salam School

40 mentors  1200 students (grades 1-9)

JUNE 2013


DATES•Atmeh, Syria
Atmeh IDP Camp School

7 mentors  500 students (grades 1-6)