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Syria: Someone extraordinary lives near you . . .

And you probably don’t even know it! Because extraordinary people, who do amazing stuff, don’t think of themselves as such. Which makes them even more extraordinary.

Meet Lori. A mom, living in the neighborhood, raising her family.

A few months ago, when we first started to help the Syrian families rebuild their lives, we tried to prioritize what needed to be done. Through the course of that process, we identified a high school senior with big dreams: become a doctor. She wants a bright future, and she deserves every single bit of it. So quite naturally, she wants to go to college.

Here’s the thing though: I have been in this country for nine years, I speak fluent English and am well surrounded by Americans who have been living here all their life, and yet, the college process is daunting to me. I can’t make sense of many things, and I’m stressing up just thinking about how I will get through this. So I can’t even begin to imagine what it would feel like if I didn’t master the language, didn’t know anyone who could explain it to me, and had to do it by yesterday.

Lori wasn’t going to let that young lady with a promising future fall through the crack. So she grabbed her hand, and together, they are working their way through college applications , dealing with deadlines, essays, and the myriads of other things that need taken care of.

What’s extraordinary about this situation is not just how this young girl gets a fair chance at building her life, all thanks to Lori. what is beyond extraordinary is everything else it represents: hopefully, she will go to college, be successful, marry and have children. She will teach her kids that a while back, a lady  who didn’t know her stepped into her life. Despite wars going on, despite a fear climate that taints good deeds with political colors, Lori,  from a different background, culture, religion and language gave her opportunities.

And that, people, is how you spread tolerance and compassion in a world that desperately needs more of it.  That’s what’s extraordinary about Lori.

 

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