"Thank you for what you are doing for this house. They do really need it…”
Her name is Om Minas*, in tears she lits up the gaz of her new cooker… Smiling but shooken up by the emotion that she couldn’t control, she hugged and kissed us as if we were her own children…. We had come the previous week-end to give her boxes of food and first necessity hygiene products , and a week after giving her that cooker we came back to give her two beds.
The first time we met her in the small Christian village of Khabab, we were struck by the misery of her house that was balanced by the incredible tidiness of it. In the kitchen, an antique cooker was on the floor, no tables or chairs could be seen, nor any furnitures : the matresses were also on the floor. Only a decayed couch in the living room allowed us to have the tea, the oriental welcoming being still intact despite this decrepit house, this was for us the occasion to better know her, her life and all she had been through. Widow for many years, Oma Minas* stayed with her two sons *, Fady who’s 15 and Karam, who’s 18. The two elders, Georges and Eli, enlisted in the army, had left a long time ago. Passionnate wood and stones carvers, before the war, they provided for the family needs by selling their works of art. The last child Maria is studying at the Mar Boulos oprhenage in Damascus.
It tooks us two months to evaluate the needs and give equipment to 15 houses in Khabab. Each time, we were deeply touched and impressed by the generosity of the people we visited. They always were eager to serve coffee or tea, fruits or biscuits. Notwithstanding their poverty, all the homes we visited were proud to keep up the standards of the famous Levantine hospitality. “It is the entire village in Khabab that we wanted to help. Not only the poorest families but also the whole local economy. That is why, we bought many things in the smallest shops”, explains Alessandro an Italian volunteer in charge of the project.
For Shady and Hayat’s kids we bought school supplies. For Joseph who is blind and mute, it was an alarm clock. For Turkya, it was a washing powder. For all the families we visited it was food boxes that contained flour, pasta, sugar, coffee, tea, tins, oil, bulgur, rice, chickpeas, tomato sauce …
After these food-packs distributions, we also gave away four cookers to replace the ones that seemed dangerous for the families. We ended by giving away five beds: that is five persons that will no longer sleep directly on the floor.
Now, deeply touched by this human experience, we would like to visit other houses and to continue to give products of first necessity to other families in Khabab.
As we leave Om Minas' house after setting up the metallic beds, a neighbour passing by told us : “Thank you for what you are doing for this house. They do really need it…”
These words are first and foremost addressed to you dear donors, so THANK YOU on the behalf of these families in Khabab! A foodpack for a family in Khabab costs around 50€. Seven foodpack feed seven families for two month.
*For secutrity reasons, names were changed.