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Service Programs

Volunteers Sing and Play with Orphans in Beirut

A group of volunteers partnered with the Hope Foundation, a Lebanese charity, to perform for a group of orphans on November 14, 2008, as part of Youth Service Weekend. When they arrived they found Mr. Ghosn, president of the Hope Foundation, busy giving a bunch of little kids pink and blue crowns/hats in dim light coming from barred windows. As has been the norm in Lebanon for years, a power cut was happening, and there was no electricity in this big, long room.

Mr. Ghosn told a little bit about his foundation, which provides free medicine to needy people and believes in helping everyone equally, whether they are Muslim or Christian. He also brought volunteers from both religions on this day.

After the play, the kids started drawing what they thought peace was on sheets of white cardboard put up all around the walls. There were pictures of families, hearts, and birds.

After all the kids, most of whom have lost one or both parents, got their hats, the program started. Naturally, the national anthem came first, sung with greatest enthusiasm by 33 children ages five to 12 eagerly screaming at the top of their lungs. Now the kids formed one big circle with a Hope member in the middle, and they started singing songs together while making actions with their hands.

One Ambassador for Peace who was serving as a Project Monitor recognized an Arabic version of the song “Eensy Weensy Spider” and reported, "It was great to see how involved the kids all got, and I admired the patience and energy of those volunteers who even taught the children some dancing (the electricity came back in the meantime)."

After investing their energy into a whole bunch of songs, the kids were asked to sit down, and the four volunteers performed a little play. It was an educational play about not littering and respecting nature, very appropriate to the situation in Lebanon. After the play, the kids started drawing what they thought peace was on sheets of white cardboard put up all around the walls. There were pictures of families, hearts, and birds. Some kids did Lebanese flags, and one little girl drew her mom even though she doesn’t have one, touching one of the monitors deeply.

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