If a man shuts his ears to the cry of the poor, he too will cry out and not be answered.Proverbs: 21:13

An Image That Shocked the World

SHOCKING: the image of three-year-old Aylan washed up on the beach.

It took a tragic photo to awake many out of years of apathy. Media buzzed. Borders opened. Transport rolled. Donations flowed.

Illustration by Robert Sharp,

Illustration by Robert Sharp,

Desperate and weary, crowds of fleeing strangers surged forward to Europe. No idea of what was ahead. Just one step further away from the zone of misery left behind.

The Arab virtue of hospitality: the welcome of strangers.

The Arab virtue of hospitality: the welcome of strangers.

CERTAIN: not wanting to leave…

We’ve talked to desperately uprooted refugees. Only the na├»ve suggest that these want to leave their relatives, homes, and lands.

We have longtime friends from these regions. They have welcomed us into stone homes built by their great-grandparents.

Their neighbors served us sweet tea under grape arbors. Their toddlers, just like Aylan, roamed freely from house to house.

Every refugee we’ve spoken to flees from a deplorable context of dark despair. They are “not going to” anywhere. They are “fleeing from.” There’s a world of difference.

ASTONISHING: staying in the midst of…

When I saw the photo of little Aylan face-down on the beach, I immediately thought of our dreamers enduring in those hard places from which others flee in despair.

Their hard places are every bit as dark and desperate. They do not flee from suffering, but stay in the midst of chaos.

Hope drives them to pursue their dreams:

  • One dreamer couple is raising their toddler and newborn in the midst of conflict to coordinate volunteers to sustain 410 displaced families with mentally challenged members.
  • Another dreamer has refused to let red-tape and discrimination deter him from building a school for 957 displaced boys and girls in the midst of their exile.
  • Yet another dreamer has continued to guide a “big brothers and sisters” network of over 2,900 who befriending the mentally challenged. He has founded a center welcoming challenged refugees in the midst of his own crisis of homelessness.

SURPRISING: we have a role…

However, hope sometimes needs a boost. Just a few days ago, one dreamer shared his heart, “We kept pursuing the dream because you said, ‘We are with you.'”

Dreams InDeed can stand with them because you stand with us!

Your stand of solidarity has helped us raise $124,000 toward our $150,000 goal to strengthen our dreamers in the midst of hard places across the Middle East. We are now seeking to raise the last $26,000 by November 1, 2015.

Your gifts enable us to be strengthen their resolve:

  • To pursue dreams in the midst of their disrupted lives.
  • To demonstrate a living hope in the midst of their suffering.
  • To model endurance in the midst of pressures to quit and run.

The joy of hanging in there together.

The joy of hanging in there together.

Won’t you stand with us so we can stand with them?


Janice Hayashi Haskell
Vice-President for Program
Dreams InDeed

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