I woke up to the news of another terrorist attack on Tuesday. My heart sunk as I watched the bombs explode, innocent people run in fear, dust settling on the destruction. How long? I wondered. How long does this have to go on? I breathed a selfish sigh of relief as I thanked God it wasn't happening in my county, or anywhere close to me. I didn't have to wonder if my loved ones were coming home tonight, or if I was safe. But I started to think about the people for whom this is their reality. Living in fear, with no hope.
The truth is that terrorism is the reality of many. Especially for those involved with the slightly related conflict in Syria. This March marks the 5th anniversary of the conflict in Syria. I had no idea it had been that long. It's funny how oblivious you are when it isn't happening to you. But I'm sure in Syria, it's felt like 500 years.
The conflict in Syria has caused the largest refugee crisis since World War II. My great uncle was a refugee during World War II and I've heard stories of him leaving everything- his house, his friends, his pets, his toys, his valuables- to live in a new country where the language and customs were strange, and the comforts of home were gone.
As I'm working towards finding my niche for my blog, I always gravitate towards inspiring others to make the world a better place. Lately, I've been wanting to explore this value more, an idea of working together to make change happen in our world. Last week, I shared about homelessness-- both my personal story about my homeless friend and tips on interacting with the homeless.
This week, I want to focus on helping refugees.
CARE is a humanitarian organization that fights against global poverty. They especially focus on coming alongside poor women, because they know that women can change families and communities. Recently, CARE has reached over 1 million Syrians, whether it's offering food baskets, grocery debit cards, emergency shelter or hygiene kits. As this brutal and bloody conflict in Syria is being drug out past the 5 year mark, CARE now wants to deliver something more important than anything else: HOPE.
The very first people to experience hope from CARE were child refugees during World War II. American families sent packages and letters as these children and their families tries to survive in Europe. Now, these children are all grown up, and now, these World War II refugees pay it forward, by writing letters and sending package to Syrian refugees. Because they can relate all too well to the feeling of fleeing for your life. The video above has already been shared on major news outlets and all over the Internet. There's no way you'll have a dry eye watching this.
I wanted in. So I decided to send a letter. I went to CARE.org and wrote a letter to a refugee. Because, quite honestly, material help can only offer so much. You also need to send help for the soul. I wanted them to know they aren't alone and that I am praying for them, that things will get better and they are loved. Here's what I shared:
From there, my message will be translated and sent to refugees that have been displaced and are in need of a kind word. I pray that after learning a little bit more about these fellow humans in such a terrible position, that you feel moved to help them. Here's my top ways to help those displaced because of the Syrian conflict. Please join me:
Write a letter of hope.
You can write a letter, too. Go to CARE.org and click "Write a Letter". You can remain anonymous, but know that your words make a difference. Consider sharing some love. It'll only take a few minutes from your day, but will have a huge impact. Click HERE to write a letter and send HOPE to those who desperately need it.
Donate to CARE.
CARE does so much to send help to those in need. Even a dollar helps and can send valuable goods to those that need it way more than you need that caramel latte. Click HERE to donate money to CARE's cause.
Donate a care package to a Syrian family.
Install the We-Care browser extension that unlocks donations while you online shop.
Install this browser extension and then every time you shop online or browse the internet, you are able to unlock donations to support CARE. You're going to shop and browse anyways, why not help others in the meantime? Click HERE to install the browser extension.
Send a letter to the President.
Whatever your political stance is, I think we can all agree that we want to help others. By sending this letter to President Obama, you aren't asking that they allow refugees in the United States, but that the United States keep humanitarian aid for refugees at the forefront of the conversation, which I believe we can all agree is important. Click HERE to send a letter to President Obama.