This young family has overcome one obstacle after another. Ahmad suffered from polio as a child, which resulted in a disability that has confined him to a wheelchair since. This did not keep Ahmad and his pregnant wife, Hanaa, from fleeing the violence of war in Syria with their three young boys. The family waited in refugee housing for the three years, and finally, they were granted legal placement in the USA in August 2016.
Ahmad, who worked as a professional tailor in Syria, has already found and acclimated to a full-time job at Dearborn Denim, a manufacturing facility in Chicago. Hanaa, who still struggles with PTSD, is bravely facing counseling and negotiating the customs of a new country while caring for her four boys (seen below, ages 3 to 11).
A recent article published by the Syrian Community Network spotlights the family HERE
- Purchase a handicap-accessible van – this will allow Ahmad to get to and from work more quickly; take the family to doctor and green card appointments; and access essential services
- Provide driving lessons for Ahmad so that he can drive the van
- Assist the family with rent money for the second half of their lease so that they do not need to live hand-to-mouth, while they seek more affordable housing.HOW YOU CAN HELP
-Share the link to this campaign: Because you so generously shared and contributed to the first campaign, we were the June recipients of the GoFundMe's Gives Back award of $1000 for the campaign. Let’s do it again!
-Donate to this campaign – a lot or a little, each donation is a show of support for an industrious family who wants to be independent and self-supporting. We can help by giving them a buffer of time and resources to acclimate successfully and become fully engaged community members.
WHAT THE FAMILY HAS ACCOMPLISHED SO FAR
Contributions from an earlier GoFundMe campaign helped the Alatrash family take these crucial first steps:
- The whole family is progressing in learning English both in comprehension and communication
- The family is completing the last steps of the green card process and is well on their way to becoming permanent residents
- The two older boys are doing well in school
- The two younger boys are now in pre-school and thriving
- All four boys were able to go to summer camp
- Ahmad and Hanaa have passed their driving permit tests and are now ready to learn to drive
- Ahmad was fitted for special leg and back braces and is attending physical therapy to learn to stand and even walk for first time in his adult life, all while continuing to work at the denim factory
- Hanaa is receiving counseling for her PTSD
We are especially grateful to Tim T., a friend of Ahmad’s. Tim has helped Ahmad find employment with Dearborn Denim, driven Ahmad and the family to countless medical appointments, and navigated the incredibly complex system of disability assistance. Tim will be helping the family by disbursing your donations for expenses, including transportation, driving lessons, and rent.