Planting the Seeds of Hope and watching the flowers bloom

It is once again that time of year when we share with pride the achievements of our LE.O Student Community. It is a time to celebrate for sure, as these hardworking, dedicated and focused young Palestinians reach yet another milestone in their lives. Their sacrifices and persistence are to be commended, for by now you know of their origins, challenges and limited opportunities.

This year the LE.O Student Community graduating consists of : High School graduates, Undergraduates, Post-Graduate students, and two PhDs.

They come from: The West Bank, Gaza, Palestine “48, Lebanon and Egypt.

They studied in: France, Germany, Egypt, England, Canada, Lebanon and the USA.

They studied at: Oxford University, Purdue University, Claremont McKenna, two at The University of Rochester, The University of Richmond, Florida University, Rutgers University, The College of Idaho, the Lebanese International University, Beirut Arab University, Cairo University, Ecole National Superieure du Petrole et des Moteurs, ( IFP ) , at private schools in Germany and another in Canada.

Their field of interest/study/employment: Biomedical Engineering ( x3 ), Medicinal Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology, Psychological and Cognitive Sciences, Microbiology and Cell Science, Computational Neuroscience, Chemistry, Nursing, AI, Hotel Management, IT, Human Geography, Global Affairs, Calibration and Validation Engineering and yet undecided.

What’s next: Lecturer at Oxford for the next few years, Nursing in Lebanon, employed by NGO’s  in Lebanon and the US, a Masters’ program at The University of Rochester,  PhD candidates at The University of Delaware and The University of Wisconsin at Madison, Hotel and Hospitality Management in Germany, employment in France, and internships in the US.

Seven students come from refugee camps, two are orphans. One female has chosen not to be included in our photo collage. And as for details on all of the community members, we have voted to keep their full identity private. More  details can be provided by request.

Impressive indeed, evidence of how education can transform a persons’ future prospects and have a positive and lasting impact  on their lives, that of their families, present and future.

Currently one of our biggest concerns are for our youth living in Lebanon, many are having to drop out of university due to the dire economic situation there. With your help we can step up to ensure that their educations are not interrupted and that they are able to develop skills to earn a living in the future. We focus on areas of study that can ensure employment in Lebanon such as IT, Nursing and Teachers, as you might know many fields are not accessible to them as Palestinians. We are receiving requests for tuition payment aid of $1,500- $1,800 a year, the students would also require transportation expenses and book costs of around $400 a year.

We are tested in this generation to lift our students up, not by amplifying their hardships and vulnerabilities but by focusing on their strengths and ability to overcome the circumstances and conditions of their lives. It’s an open secret that our youth live in exploitative environments, what is lesser known and understood is the responsibility that rests with us.

Today we ask for your support to continue our work as this cannot be achieved without your engagement and gifts. We exist purely through the generosity of individual donors and a few foundations, and to them we say, Thank You Thank You Thank You.