Forced to leave their city, their home, their family, many Syrian children carry with them their hope for a better future. The Book of Dreams is a tribute to the children of Syria.
Khadija, 12, is from Syria but now lives in Lebanon with her family. During her first year there, she could not go to school as her family could not afford it. Fortunately, a place soon became available for her: Khadija was ecstatic!
“I want to be able to study to become a doctor,” she says. “As long as I’m allowed to keep going to school here, I know that my dream can come true one day. When I’m older and have children, I won’t let them miss a single day of school. I will tell them that school is the place where dreams come true!”
Children have to be supported and given all the tools they need to make their dreams come true. Qassim is 30 and comes from Syria. He now lives in Turkey and volunteers at the Farah Centre, where he provides psychological support to children and organises activities for them.
Most of the refugee kids he helps have difficulties speaking their own language because they either left Syria when they were very little or they were born in a refugee camp. With his colleagues, Qassim decided to organise Arabic conversation groups to help them out.
The language we speak is an essential part of our identity.
“At the beginning, of course, [the children] had a lot of trouble learning. To them, it was like a foreign language, but slowly, as they gradually progressed, they began to enjoy it. In the end, their parents could hardly believe how well they were speaking Arabic!”
For most of the children who have had to start fresh in a new, foreign country, learning is one of the most important things: studying will help them become who they want to be in the future.
Hiba, 12, is from Syria and lives in Jordan with her parents. She does not remember her home country very well, but feels lucky to be in Jordan, where she goes to school every day. Hiba loves singing and dreams of becoming a teacher one day.
“My classmates and I think it’s great to have the chance to learn,” she explains. “One of my dreams would be to become a teacher later in life and be able to help children like me. [...] I really hope my dream [...] comes true one day. If I had a magic wand, I would make sure that everyone was happy and had the best life possible!”