My name is Ismail El Ainain (D.O.B: 22\4\2000). I am a Palestinian citizen, born and raised in Lebanon. In 1948 my grandfather was forced to leave Palestine and went to Lebanon with the hope of starting a new life so that his children would not suffer living in a war zone. Unfortunately, the move wasn’t exactly the outcome he had hoped for as the family became refugees, and are still till this day! My dad was a hard worker, at the age of 13 he was looking after the entire family while studying. He was so close to achieving his dream of becoming a doctor as he got accepted to the best university in Lebanon, but due to the low income that surrounded the family, he could not have this opportunity and went on to study accounting at a local institute to support his family. Till this day he only earns 20% of what a beginner Lebanese accountant earns.
I grew up wanting to get out of Lebanon because of what happened with my father. I knew I had to leave the country to be able to have a better chance at getting an education. Like my father, I depended on myself since I was a kid. Every summer I would find a job to earn myself an allowance and help my parents. Having that life of struggle and constant fear of not being able to achieve my dreams was like a nightmare. I heard about an opportunity that excellent High School students could get a full scholarship to go abroad and finish their High School there. That was my focus and my ticket out. I studied hard and I improved myself and my English. That drive and constant push of wanting a better life helped me attain that chance and clutch it in my hands. I got accepted into an international boarding school in India called the Woodstock School, a top tier school that helped me pave the way for a better future. After two exhilarating years at this incredible facility, I had the chance to go to Germany and get my undergraduate education there as I was accepted into Jacobs University in Bremen with an amazing scholarship. It all seemed too good to be true. During my visa application at the German embassy, the refugee card haunted me again, the first question I got asked was:” you’re Palestinian, why are you applying”? That gave me a stroke as I had never felt that scared of losing everything I had worked so hard for, and for something I had no control over! After a year of waiting and constant talks with the university, my visa got rejected. That broke me and convinced me that I had no future outside of Lebanon. I kept trying to find other opportunities but with no luck, I couldn’t find anything. It was all doomed until I got a notification of opportunities to apply to university in Italy. I quickly applied, I did the entrance test and succeeded and now I am enrolled in biotechnology at the University of Pavia.
I have talked to the university and they said I am eligible to apply for a full scholarship next year, and they don’t give loans to international students, so this is not an option. This is my last gasp for a better life and a good education. Till this moment, I have been searching for work, but have been unsuccessful because of covid. All that is stopping me from having a good education are the expenses of the first year.
My future education is settled but now I will need 15,000 Euros, for room, books and other living expenses, lab fees this year.
I have fought so hard to not let this bring me down. Please help me if you can, as it would literally change my life.
Thanks to everyone in advance for your contribution!
- Janak Singh
- Soraya Farha
- Jessica Stoll
- Faisal Qadir
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