Nothing could have predicted that Clara was a leader. A Lebanese-born American teenager who lives a happy regular life in Boston, she probably never imagined that her actions would light a fire of happiness at Al-Kafaàt this past July.
And a fire of happiness, she did create.
Clara knew of Al-Kafaàt. She had attended a couple of presentations about the Foundation at her Church (St. Georges Antiochian Orthodox Church) in Boston, as Al-Kafaàt and the Antiochian Orthodox Archdiocese built together a 6-floor building and Center for children with Down syndrome and Autism in the Village Rehabilitation Campus of Al-Kafaàt.
This building welcomes today over 500 children and teenagers with handicaps who are delivered with free of charge rehabilitation services.
Last summer, Clara spent her summer holidays in Lebanon and kindly asked if she could volunteer at Al-Kafaàt. And volunteer she did: at that very same Center she had heard about while in Boston, taking care of children with intelligence handicaps.
But Clara did not stop here. Upon her return to Boston, she kept on following the Al-Kafaàt news via our social media, and she was particularly moved when she heard about the Ministry of Social Affairs’ delays in payments to our Foundation and to all local humanitarian organizations.
This moved her immensely. On her own, and without hesitation – without even telling us about it – Clara decided to take action: she created a movement in her Church in Boston, organized a fundraising event, and collected – on her own – a considerable sum of money that she brought with her this summer on her new volunteering trip, as a generous donation to our Foundation.
Our team was moved by this personal initiative that not only showed the true passion and fire in the heart of Clara, but her determination and will to create a change.
Her donation came at the right time and went towards organizing our yearly Special Summer Camp. And it was with much joy – and plenty of emotions – that Clara was spontaneously thanked by all Campers during the final bonfire event.
It truly takes one spark to launch a fire: one spark of kindness to launch waves of human kindness and empathy, one spark of kindness to show us who is truly committed to Humanity and who chooses to act and create a change.
Thank you Clara.