Melanie assisting in Jerusalem, Israel.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Melanie assisting in Jerusalem, Israel.
January, 2007
and enjoying herself as she always does.
 
 

Victor Nigeria trains and visits Mombasa Kenya.

Melanie visits Jerusalem Israel

Monday, January 22, 2007

Melanie Price and Thelma Lynch in Jerusalem, Isreal

 

A Ray of Hope, and The Sunflower Trust giving words of hope and a hand of friendship to the Domari People of Old Jerusalem.

 

Amoun Sleem’s home, is a tiny room in the wall of Jerusalem. Hugging every wall is a bed. 6 people live in this little room. This is the bedroom, and the living room, changing room and lounge. You quickly learn to get on with your brothers and sisters.

The Lions Gate is famous for its view overlooking the Garden of Gethsemane.  I telephoned Amoun immediately, when I arrived in that Great City. We met the next day, at The Domari Society, situated just outside the city, on the East bank.

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Amoun is running single handed this little center for poor women and children, who live in and around the old city of Jerusalem. Most of the women are one parent families. The children are taught how to read and write, that goes for some of the older women and children as well, who never had the opportunity, or the money to get an education. I asked Amoun what I should bring, and she told me that they were starting to do a hairdressing course for the girls. Could I bring some hairbrushes, and combs, and creams, and hairdryers, etc, etc. The centre is quite resourceful, but everything relies on things being donated.

 

They have a nice little library, where a lot of the books are in English. I was quite surprised when the children were retorting, Hello, how are you, Hello are you...over and over again. Amoun explained that she is teaching them English, and sees it as a way forward for the girls to get jobs in the future in hotels or shops. I met some of the mums who spendtheir time begging in the gates of the old city, very demeaning for them, but jobs for single mums, are not readily available, and many times they were beaten by the elders of the communities.

 

Poverty is looked down on, and orphans are not seen as humans of any worth. The Domari people have lived in and around Israel for many centuries, originally being nomads and Bedouins. They were very warm and welcoming towards me, and I felt at home with them straight away.

 

Outcome of my visit, is yet to be seen. I have put Amoun in touch with several other similar groups, who live and work in Jerusalem. The Jerusalem School, in Shekut, have promised to help with educational ideas, and will see what they can do to set up some kind of programme to develop awareness and friendship. The Domari Society also make little handicrafts, to try and help support the centre, but not enough is ever sold to actually keep the centre in rent. They have been supported by small businesses and Church groups, but money is quickly being absorbed by the utility bills and rent. Amoun, has dedicated her life to this work. We took out some hand made necklaces, that might be sold to help pay for the rent  Amoun is to much admired for her tenacity, and persistence. She doesn’t  earn money because of the love for the people, so she lives very frugally. We left some money for the work, and clothes for the women and the children. Little fleeces were given to the young ones, as it was very cold at night, and many people had a very bad cough, including me.

 

The wind blew fiercely through the old and winding narrow streets of old Jerusalem, but the wind of change has come, as for Amoun and her work, in trying to empower her people, and to try and give them a chance to succeed, she already is a winner, I have invited her to come to the Summer Conference here in UK, where she will meet other women in similar situations. She told me her life was hard, but it would be harder if she didn’t have a cause worth fighting for. I took out some Cadburys chocolates, they went down big time., and in exchange, I got a ride on a camel. We will keep our eyes on this work and help at every opportunity we can. 

Company Support

Thank you to GMAC RFC for their vvery generous support and to Roch Valley for their continual assistance.

Israel and India

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Fleeces and clothes delivered to Israel by Mel. Baby clothes and fleece items begin their journey for the orphanage in India

Nepal - Piya and the Princesses

Monday, January 15, 2007

Dear Don,
 
Our princesses new year resolution is to study hard.  Last week princesses attended at the 7 days meditation retreat with strict observation, there were about 190 students among them - our princeseses became the best students at that retreat programme. Out of 10 prizes, 7 were won by our daughters.....they are the best.   Meanwhile, Princesses are wearing the necklace around...they like it very much. Did Krishna send you pictures? Metta Center is planning to bring them for a picnic tomorrow saturday.  Daughters cordially invite you to attend this fun event picnic.
 
I'll send you pictures after the picnic.
 
With best Wishes for new year.
 
love from Princesses and Piya

Sierra Leone and Kenya

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Miscellaneous supplies of art supplies and educational posters, source material and resources sent

From our wonderful friend Federico Mayor

Sunday, January 07, 2007

To my Dear Friends,
The very best wishes of health, serenity and foresightedness in 2007 and ever, to you and all members of A Ray of Hope. I am so happy with the number of those already illuminated by A Ray of Hope. Please forward to all my friends my highest esteem, working tirelessly in favour of human dignity, justice and peace. Federico January, 2007