Amjad

In his eyes we saw determination, strength and hope. Amjad is a leader among his friends and he very much enjoys singing revolution songs whenever the opportunity arises; indeed, he does have a great voice. “During the protests in the town of Manbij, I used to sing every Friday after prayers” he said. Amjad is a fourteen-year-old boy originally from Masaken Hanano in Aleppo, but he now lives in Gaziantep, Turkey. His family was forced to flee the shelling in Syria. The parents, Amjad and his four younger siblings live in a shack-like house in an impoverished neighborhood. “We are constantly afraid of being kicked out. The landlord promised us a clean and furnished house, but he lied to my parents and we have nowhere else to go… I have to work every day, 6 days a week, from 8 am to 6:30 pm in order to help my family survive… I give all the money I make to my father” Amjad told us. He stands on his feet all day long at a Jewelry store delivering tea to customers and cleaning the shop before closing time, doing it all for only 15 Liras a day which is less than 7 U.S. dollars. The minimum wage in the U.S. is 7.75 per hour. “I wish I can go to school to learn and to play with my friends, but I can’t, we are poor… Who will feed my family then! We left our home in Aleppo and everything else behind us… But I know we will go back one day, Syria is ours! Syria is not for him” said Amjad referring to the Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad who ordered the crackdown against the protesters. Amjad is supposed to be enrolled in school, but his family cannot afford to pay for his education.

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