Learning & Fun for Refugee-Youth!

$13,990 of $19,000 goal

Raised by 169 people in 47 months

The Sky is the Limit!

SHINE (Summer Help In English) is an intensive summer camp run by the LEAP Program in the Palestinian refugee-camps of Lebanon. In partnership with the National Institute for Social Care & Vocational Training, also known as Beit Atfal Assumoud, LEAP recruits volunteers to teach English, as well as lead recreational activities while living and working in the refugee camps.

SHINE offers students a productive and safe space during their summer vacation to strengthen their English language proficiency, while simultaneously exploring various recreational skills. In addition, students go on weekly field trips that nurture and foster students' mental, physical, and social growth at a pivotal stage in their lives. Some of these activities include yoga, photography, videography,  theater, social media, among many others! In turn, our volunteers learn about the Palestinian refugee reality in general, but particularly in Lebanon and get a glimpse of Palestinian heritage and culture. Volunteers and students share a mutual learning and sharing experience. Upon return to their home communities, volunteers are encouraged to raise awareness about the plight of Palestinian refugees.

LEAP has been operating its summer project SHINE since 2010. We have impacted over 3000 youth over the past 7 years and over 200 volunteers. Help us bring the same summer experience to over 400 refugee-youth in the camps of Lebanon this summer.

Adolescents face a number of social pressures and adult-like responsibilities. SHINE allows them to be children, while also re-inspiring their thirst for knowledge. English is an essential skill because in Lebanon, students must take a national exam for promotion to high school, which is administered in English. LEAP's SHINE project aims to remedy these impediments and advance youth through our intensive and fun summer project, which promises to make youth feel more confident, happy, and accomplished. 90% of youth expressed that their English proficiency improved and they felt more confident in English, while 98% indicated that they intend to participate in SHINE again. 

Help us bring in our 8th year and make SHINE 2017 a reality by generously contributing today!
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Week 1 of SHINE 2017 is in the books!

This week our teachers’ long hours of preparation finally came in to play with high quality English language instruction throughout the BAS centers of Bourj El Shemale and Rashidieh camps. Students have been so eager to get to know their teachers and to start learning English that many have showed up at the centers nearly an hour early.

One of the goals of LEAP is to provide a comfortable learning environment for all types of students. We have students who are working on creative writing and the finer points of composition, and we have students working on basic writing skills and early vocabulary. We strive to make sure that all students feel validated in what they bring to the table.
Each student is a gift to our program, and we are so thrilled to have them. We accept them as they are, whether they have taken 6 years of English or none.
I worked with a student named Mohammad in 2014. At that time, he was in the advanced class. He had many years of English experience and a real knack for language - so much so that I began teaching him Russian upon his request. Young, brave, and trilingual, Mohammad never once forgot about the other students around him. He has continued to return to the program as a volunteer with BAS, working with students of much different English experience levels compared to his own.

Part of this is undoubtedly due to Mohammad’s strength of character, but part of it is also a lived expression of an essential ideal LEAP holds dear: that every student, regardless of educational or socioeconomic background, deserves equal access to high quality education. Our students live this out in their interactions with one another. They help and support each other daily. Our volunteers and teachers live this out in their lesson plans and their consistent patience.
LEAP is a labor of love. Each of us is drawn to this work for different reasons, but each of us works toward one end - the empowerment and advancement of Palestinians.

This week our students had fun at the river and the fun fair, got to play soccer and learn Bollywood dancing, read stories both silly and serious, made art and wrote poetry, sang and played, learned and grew.

As SHINE 2017 marches forward, we hope you’ll join us with your continued support and donations.

-Jackson, Lead Education Coordinator
Morning Lineup in Rashidieh
English Class
Students at the River Trip
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SHINE 2017 has officially begun! Our teachers and coordinators have been preparing all week, designing some amazing lessons for our students. Many of us know the tremendous power that education has in the life of a child. It is our hope that with your help, we can continue to realize that message and live out this philosophy.

Responding to a question about how she felt about LEAP, a student in Bourj El Shemale said “I feel hopeful.” Our mission lives and breathes in sentences like this one. We dream to have her and every student that joins us this summer feel this way throughout our program. With all our pooled resources, we can realize that dream. In fact, we can push onward, making hope a state of mind, rather than a fleeting feeling.

Over 300 laughing, screaming, playing, loving, thinking young people joined us in our program starting this morning. They are as diverse as they are brimming with energy. The rowdy and the shy, the readers and the speakers, the listeners and the doers - all of these students are with us this summer.

Let us continue our grassroots efforts to fundraise for this important work. Our students need and deserve more pencils, more chairs, more health insurance, more notebooks, more love, warmth, and attention in the classroom. With your help, we can continue to reach toward our goal of $19,000.

Please consider donating today in any amount, and please consider sharing this information with your friends and loved ones.

-Jackson, LEAP Lead Education Coordinator
Mr. Frank's English Class
Mr. Tom's English Class
Creative Arts Class
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“Gun powder and lights filled the sky. Fireworks of celebration permeated every inch of the city. As blasts of green and red washed over my eyes, I sat in the apartment considering the reasons for celebration. I was told that students the country round were celebrating successful Brevet results. I thought about the students served by SHINE. I imagined that not everyone in the country was celebrating that night, and I fell silent.”
Students in Lebanon are required to pass national exams in their ninth year to continue on in their educations. Palestinian students in Lebanon disproportionately lack the English proficiency necessary to succeed on the Brevet, so much so that of the percentage that do take the exams, over 40% fail.
SHINE 2017 embarks on a mission to provide critical English education services to hundreds of young people in Bourj al Shamale and Rashidieh refugee camps. Our program targets the needs of the community, partnering with local leaders and organizations to deliver high-quality classes and recreational activities taught by internationals from across the world. A strong team of volunteers brings with it years of experience in teaching, activism, and project management. Every day, we work to ensure that each and every student feels valued and cared for, and that they leave feeling positively about their educational experience. Our goal is to instill a positive attitude toward education and future aspirations amongst all the young people we serve, in an effort to build social mobility for Palestinian refugees in Lebanon. All children deserve to feel good about themselves, and all children deserve to explore the world through a quality education.
SHINE 2017 begins in only 9 days, and we still need your help! In order to deliver these services to so many students, we are asking for the continued support of community members and partners through donations. The bottom line: to reach our goal, we still need $6,115. We are already over two-thirds of the way there! We hope you will consider donating generously today!
Fireworks celebrate passing Brevet exam
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16 MORE DAYS & $6400 MORE TO GO!

To our beloved LEAP community,

On behalf of all of us, Eid Mubarak to those celebrating! May this month have been one of reflection, remembrance, and heightened spirituality. In the spirit of giving this Ramadan, please consider contributing to the LEAP Program’s 8th summer SHINE project for Syrian and Palestine refugee-youth in Lebanon.

In only 16 days, over 300 refugee-youth in the camps of both Bourj el Shamale and Rashidieh will come through the doors of the Beit Atfal Assummoud community centers to participate in LEAP’s SHINE 2017 summer camp.

Equipped with the vision of endless possibility and daring youth to BELIEVE that their lives matter and improvement starts with their beautiful mind and vision, LEAP offers students to participate in an enriching, intensive, and fun summer program to advance their academic performance. The LEAP program needs your help to make this shared vision a reality!

Help us raise at least $6400 more to reach our fundraising goal before the summer camp begins! Due to your generous contributions in previous years, LEAP has reached over 3000 refugee youth, enrolled over 200 program volunteers, and implemented over 150 awareness sessions since our inception in 2010.

Support us in our last fundraising push before the start of SHINE in only 16 days! Please donate to invest in the intellectual curiosity and educational empowerment of Syrian and Palestine refugee-youth in Lebanon.

with gratitude & love,
The LEAP Family
Making learning fun!
Students Designing a Mural in Community
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$13,990 of $19,000 goal

Raised by 169 people in 47 months
Created April 16, 2014
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7 months ago
Adriana Curto
8 months ago

Much love to my LEAP Family in their incredible efforts for 2017!

8 months ago
Jemmie Adams
8 months ago

Hold it down!

Sabine Krusche
9 months ago

Thank you, Lavinia

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