iftar (breaking the fast) with Syrian refugees in Amman

Our Project GO and Dialogue students were treated to an evening with three families of Syrians who are in Amman, as refugees from the Syrian civil war.  We broke our group of 29 students plus 5 staff and translators into three groups.  My group was hosted by a family of 9:  6 children (3 boys, 3 girls), their parents, and their aunt (mom's sister). Of course we provided the funds so that the families could prepare food without the expense of feeding our group; we arranged this with a friend of mine (Ms. Dema) who works with Syrian families all over Jordan.  And of course, we also left a donation to the families for whatever purposes they see fit.

It was a beautiful night, according to all three of our different groups.  I found tonight both heart-warming and heart-breaking at the same time.  Hearing the stories of war, families split apart, mothers disappeared, fathers shot and wounded and unable to work, children unable to attend schools for whatever bureaucratic or financial reasons that prevent them, yet also the smiles, the love, the laughter, the joy, the appreciation they all exhibited.  AND I, who have little to do with Facebook, ending up as "new friends" with Muhammad the 17-year old Syrian boy/young man who hosted us.  and yes, there was face painting in one of our groups (see "Batman" below  :-)







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