When we met Adeebah and her family there were obvious signs of trauma and PTSD. They were afraid of leaving their home, the youngest had trouble speaking, and they had reoccurring nightmares and insomnia.
Before the war, they lived in a beautiful home. Adeebah and her family would sit together in their courtyard in the morning listening to the birds chirp as they ate breakfast.
Tensions began to rise in their town and her husband was kidnapped and tortured by the Syrian army for forty days. During that time, Adeebah was so afraid that she would sleep in the bathroom with her children at night, sure that one of the bombs she heard in the distance would find its way to their home before the sun rose. When her husband was finally released, they decided to take their children and escape to safety.
"Friends are a gift from God. I consider these friends [from Cedars Network] my sisters...
When my sister encouraged me to draw, I couldn't believe it was real."
One day we noticed that Adeebah had doodled on a napkin and because of our love for the arts, we brought her a sketchbook and drawing supplies the next time we saw her. Within a few weeks she filled her sketchbook with beautiful drawings expressing her emotions and experiences. She shared with us that this gave her real hope in the midst of what felt like a very hopeless situation.
After about a month, a group of volunteer's saw her drawings and over the next two years over a hundred of her drawings were sold all over the world, from Dubai to the US and Canada, helping to provide for her family.
You may have even purchased one of her drawings!
In the Fall of 2016, this precious family was finally allowed to immigrate to the US (after waiting several years). Since that time they have been diligently learning English, Adeebah's husband was able to find a job, and the children were finally able to go to school without being bullied.
Many wonderful people have continued to love and encourage this family over the last year and we are so grateful.
Adeebah has continued to use her charcoal as her means of expression and she was just featured in a local news article in their new US town. Her story may even be featured in an article in the New Times!
Thank you for helping to make Adeebah's dreams come true! She is flourishing!