first come to mind? Brothers? Sons? Nephews? Students? Family
friends? Maybe you see yourself at those ages. These photos were taken in Feb 2018. Almost four and a half years
later, these boys are now 11, 13, and 16. The oldest and youngest have the vision to become engineers. The
middle still undecided. All enjoy swimming and playing soccer while not in school. On paper
the words are ordinary, endearing, almost expected. But their childhood years have been anything but basic. Having fled a
war-torn Syria as young boys, they've spent their formative years
living as refugees in Jordan. Their mother is one of the 60 women Love for Syria has worked with
since 2013. She continues to knit and sell handcrafted items,
generating a bit of income to support her boys in reaching their
dreams. If you'd like to join Love for Syria in the shared goal of continuing
to support the children of Syria, please consider donating at
Where will these boys be in the next four years?We may not have those exact answers but we do know- without
hesitation- that we'll be there rooting for them. With love,
The Domino Effect
In case you missed our New Years' newsletter, here's a quick recap and an update on how Love for Syria continues to witness the Domino Effect at play.
- In Oct 2021, a small rural church in Virginia was hosting a yard sale with proceeds going to an impoverished school in Appalachia. Love for Syria had a small table, sold a bit of knitwear and piqued some interest in what we are all about.
- This same church gave me the opportunity to share about Love for Syria on a Sunday morning in Nov 2021.
- We were blown away by knitwear sales and donations!
- Between donations from that church and an online giving campaign, we were able to give gifts to 130 children at that same school in rural Kentucky!
- We surpassed our financial goal and with the excess were able to gift all 38 teachers and staff Love for Syria infinity scarves.
- I was approached by a couple who heard me speak at church expressing their desire to do more.They had been active military deployed with the Navy in 2013, right around the time the US was contemplating an intervention. While they never went into Syria, this couple shared with me how the magnitude of the Syrian crisis had stayed on their hearts over the years following. She wondered what had become of the millions of refugees fleeing, if things had gotten easier or more difficult, how life was able to move on.
- They decided they didn't want to ADD to Love for Syria but instead MULTIPLY.Nicole runs an online boutique of handcrafted children's clothing and accessories and she decided to donate all December proceeds of bow sales to Love for Syria! Her initiative raised over $550 dollars, which is income for a woman FOR ALMOST SIX MONTHS while generating awareness of the Syrian crisis and inspiring others to give.
This is where our New Years' blog left off….but the story isn't over!!
- When we received the proceeds from the bow initiative it wasn't just doubled but TRIPLED by the generosity of anonymous donors!!
- We've decided to press on in our initiative to PAY IT FORWARD.As donations from the fall gifted an entire school in Appalachia with knitwear, our winter donations will also be used!!
- Love for Syria will be starting 2022 by gifting another 85 infinity scarves to WOMEN AT A LOCAL SHELTER!!
- This is where YOU come in!If your heart has been moved to be a DOMINO in this season, consider donating at love4syria.org to see your money INVESTED in the life of a refugee woman knitting to survive, using her talents to gift a woman here in the US, also in her own difficult season of life. We have funds for 85 women right now…is there room for growth in the next week?
I feel incredibly humbled writing this. There can be tremendous value in retracing our steps, seeing how one small action unleashed a flurry of good things. We find the interconnectedness of our individuality breathtaking.
The sailor pictured above would have had no way to know that he'd marry the girl deployed on the ship with him in the Middle East. They couldn't have known that they'd have a daughter who in 2021, would become the model for their campaign raising money for Syrian refugees, the exact people they sought to help eight years prior.
I never envisioned #11 when I was at #1. But was I surprised? Not for a second. This has been the joy of working with Love for Syria since 2013, getting to witness first-hand every little behind-the-scenes movement, inevitably causing another domino to fall even if it's not on my exact timeline.
How various paths running separately for so long can all connect for even a split second, conspiring together, merging to do something great, weaving a beautiful tapestry full of the good moments and the bad, the highlights and the disappointments, yet grounded in a message of HOPE, that the BEST IS YET TO COME not only in the lives of the Syrian women we work with but in our own journey.
Here's to 2022 and seeing the IMMEASURABLY MORE at work!