05Oct2022

SCM Medical Missions

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Category: General

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News

April 16, 2018: Mosque gathers donations for Syrian refugees after airstrikes

Local Syrian Americans and community activists are watching the latest developments in Syria closely after the U.S. and allies launched missile strikes on Syrian targets associated with the country’s chemical weapons program on Friday.

On Saturday, Rita Zawaideh and members of the Muslim Community Resource Center collected donated clothes and items as part of a special donation drive at Maps Mosque in Redmond.

GeneralHumanitarian AidJordanPalestineRefugeesSyria

June Update from Rita

I don’t think any of us thought that we would still be in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic with July 4th right around the corner. When it started, when we first heard of it back in February and people were beginning to ask questions about how serious it would be, everyone thought it would only be a couple of months before we could get back to normal. But it keeps going on and it is getting worse and the virus is spreading into more areas of the refugee communities. And now citizens from the US being banned from travelling to Europe, and states are banning people from other states from coming to visit. The world is changing daily.

SCM is trying to keep up with the demands of the refugee communities that we support, but it is getting harder and harder on a daily basis. We have applied for funding and grants, but we have only gotten one so far from 4 Cultures, but still have not received the funds for 5K. We are relying completely on your support to keep going.

So far this month with your help we have been able to accomplish the following:

  • Load a 40 ft shipping container and send it off to Jordan. It was completely packed full of supplies for the refugees there and it will take about 45 to 60 days to arrive at our warehouse in Madaba. Thanks also to the help of Jordan Hashemite Charities, the container will be allowed into Jordan at the Aqaba port when it arrives. We have been working with the Jordan Hashemite Charities for many years now and they know us and the work we do to help the refugees there.
  • We joined forces with Dunya Productions here is Seattle to “host” a virtual play called “Stories from Palestinian”. We were able to raise $5,000 which was then wired into GAZA for medical and humanitarian assistance. We also have an ongoing food drive for Dunya to help feed Palestinian families in need.
  • Through our many contacts we were able to get $4,000 into Aleppo for food assistance and then another $4,000 to the people in Idlib for food and medical assistance.
  • For our two young men that are stuck in Serbia waiting for their paperwork to come through for Canada we were able to get them $2,000 for living expenses
  • We helped two young refugee men here in Seattle that arrived less than a year ago to get driver licenses.
    A car was donated to SCM and given to a Syrian family here to help them with their transportation needs for work, shopping, doctors appointments, etc. They no longer need to rely on public transportation or ask others for a ride somewhere.
  • We worked with a number of people to get food supplies to the needy families from farmers in eastern Washington. We got potatoes, onions and apples and these were given out to the Syrian, Afghani and Iraqi families in the Puget Sound area. I believe we had over 2500 pounds. We also got watermelons from JD Market and those were distributed to different families.
  • We have helped one Syrian family that wants to grow their own vegetable garden. We were able to purchase $570 worth of veggie and herb plants for them to grown on a piece of land near a Mosque on the east side.

We want to thank all our supporters for helping make this a great month that we were able to help all these people. A total of $33,564.90 was spent by SCM for these projects including rent and utility assistance to the refugees here.

Thank you!

~Rita

AL Hurra Interview about SCM

Here is a video of an interview done on an Arabic language station about SCM. They came to our office and talked with Rita about the work we are doing to help the refugees.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZBx-mxB18WE]

 

 

JordanNewsRefugeesSyria

Huffington Post Publishes Mission Participant’s Reflection

Subject: My Syrian Refugee Experience is published!!!!

Woah. I submitted a draft of my reflection piece that I wrote about our time together in Jordan at the Syrian Refugee Camps. And the Huffington Post published it in their blogs section today!!!

I was totally not expecting it (it’s very personal) but hope you like it.

Thank you to all of you and especially to my brother Samer, Bassam, Mona, Grace, David and Natasha. Any good that comes out of people reading this is thanks to all of you.

Please share it with your email and facebook contacts!

With love,
Amanda

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/amanda-jaber/she-is-an-american-girl-syria_b_5441923.html

Humanitarian AidJordanNewsRefugeesSyria

SJMC: A Community Hospital with Global Impact

Here is an article and photos from our medical team leader, Dr. Eyad Sayed. Click on the image to be taken to the full article.

Eyad-article

GeneralLesbosNews

Across the Straits: Refugees Arriving by Boat from Turkey

David Eng, the Starfish Harbor Master in charge of refugee operations on Molyvos Harbor on the North coast of Lesbos, called me at 5:45 am. “There is a boat with about 100 refugees at sea being rescued by the Greek Coast guard. We need you to assemble your team and meet us in Molyvos Harbor in 20 minutes.”

In the darkness of early morning, I assembled my team: Salaam Cultural Museum medics, currently 2 doctors and one nurse. We also activated humanitarian volunteers, several with critical skills of speaking Arabic and Urdu. We arrived just in time to met the Greek Coast Guard ship in the harbor at early dawn. We heard later that another refugee boat had been turned back to Turkey by the Turkish Coast Guard. Turkey is now under tremendous pressure by the European Union to prevent refugee crossings to Greece.

As the ship arrived, we identified 78 refugees, mostly Afghans who speak Pashtu and Dari; but can also understand some Urdu. There were also some Iraqis who speak Arabic. Overall, the refugees were in pretty good condition as they disembarked: Welcome to Europe!

A little cold but not too wet; some were suffering from panic episodes, some had been separated from other family members who were put on the other rescue ship during the confusion when the rescue ships first arrived. The other rescue ship was sent to another harbor (Skala Sikaminias), located an hour away on a bumpy dirt road.

Through oBlogur Urdu and Arabic translators, we had to insist multiple times to those missing their loved ones that they get into the vans that will take them to the receiving camp at Apanemo, which is run by the International Rescue Committee (IRC). One Afghan woman insisted she was not moving until we found her husband. We reassured her that she will find him at the IRC camp. That is where the other arrivals from the other rescue boat that went to Skala Sikaminias will also go.

Debra, our nurse-midwife evaluated 2 pregnant women initially thought to be in early labor. They were OK; they boarded the evacuation vans with the others without incident. One woman suffering from a severe panic attack slowly improved with verbal reassurance that everything will be OK; for the moment. The next chapter in the long ordeal for these refugees is just beginning.

Apanemo Camp is the temporary receiving camp where refugees arriving from shore are taken by the IRC vans. There they receive food, clothing and water. A makeshift clinic is there to do secondary medical evaluations. Later in the day, refugees will be transported down to the Transitional Refugee Center in Moria Camp, near Mytilene, the capital city of Lesbos.

When refugees arrive in Moria, they are sorted into Arabic speakers, mainly Syrian and Iraqi, and the others, mainly Afghan, but also Yazidi, Pakistani and several other ethnicities. In the next article, my colleague Kirsten Senturia will describe a day in the life for a refugee arriving in Moria Camp.

Dr. Bill Dienst is a rural family and emergency room physician from North Central Washington. He has extensive experience in medical exchange programs in Veracruz, Mexico and in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. He is currently on assignment with Salaam Cultural Museum, a Seattle based nonprofit organization doing humanitarian and medical relief work in Lesbos, Greece.