One of the summer after-school activities in Homs has enabled the children to get to know the residents with special needs from the Bahjat al-Hayat (Joy of Life) centre.
When those running the Generation of Hope after-school programme in Homs (which is part of the “Seeds of Hope in Syria” programme) first put forward the idea the 12-14 year olds were a little hesitant. They were attentive and curious but didn’t really know how it would go. Encouraged by the families who completely trusted those running the programme they accepted the invitation to prepare little handicrafts that could be finished with residents from the centre.
All the doubts disappeared when they arrived at the centre. The children were welcomed by the residents of “Bahjat al-Hayat”. They started introducing themselves to one another and working together on the gifts they had brought. It was not difficult to find the language they needed to make themselves understood. With Maggie, for example, who couldn’t use scissors, they were patient and helped her finish her task.
The day was spent with great joy, everyone busy finishing their work as best they could and helping the friends who were struggling. For the young people, it was an important moment of reciprocity. They, who receive assistance and support from the Generation of Hope centre, in their turn became special assistants and were able to give back to others the attention and affection they receive every day.
“This experience has been very important for us. We experienced such a joy in being able to work with these people in need. And they seemed happy to be with us. We felt like a family”.