To many the highly publicized evacuations transporting civilians out of a war torn Syria may seem like a bad dream, horror movie, or hashtag that you may post occasionally. However, for 17 year old Halema Al Hasan who was evacuated to Lebanon from the countryside of Idlib, Syria this has been a three year reality.
With dreams of returning to her home to finish her schooling, Hasan holds on to her aspirations of becoming a famous fashion designer to get her through the day. With a ten person family of four girls and four boys money is something you can never run out of and Hasan has been able to take her fashion goals and contribute to her household by working as a seamstress for the past two years and even selling some of her own designs.
Halema Al Hasan beams with joy has she talks about her cousin buying her first dress. You can also see the pride she has in her work when she talks about picking out prints and creating her own dresses, but it is hard to miss the look of frustration when she mentions the need for a newer and more modern sewing machine so that she can get more work done.
Her mother admits that the life they are living is “a hard life,” but Halema uses her sewing skills to aid in her family’s day to day struggle as well when she does things like sew a canvas cover to keep her tent cool in the summer months. Stories like this show that you can not only dream big and nurture those dreams with experiences, but you can also turn lemons into lemonade.
If you would like to see more of Halema Al Hasan’s story please click the link here and comment on what you have taken away from her story.
Written by: Chay Rodriguez