intro’d to Luma via her ted 2017:
Luma Mufleh does something revolutionary: she coaches soccer. A Jordanian immigrant and Muslim of Syrian descent, Mufleh is determined to empower refugee children everywhere.
There are 65.3 million people who have been forcibly displaced from their homes because of war or persecution. The largest number, 11 million, are from Syria. 33,952 people flee their homes daily. The vast majority remain in refugee camps, whose conditions cannot be defined as humane under anyone’s definition.
We are participating in the degradation of humans.
Never have we had numbers this high. This is the highest number of refugees since World War II.
We left because we had to, not because we wanted to. There was no choice,” she said.
It’s kind of hard to believe that you belong when you don’t have a home,
I work with kids who have seen their mothers raped, their fathers’ fingers sliced off. One kid saw a bullet put in his grandmother’s head, because she refused to let the rebels take him to be a child soldier. Their journeys are haunting. But what I get to see every day is hope, resilience, determination, a love of life and appreciation for being able to rebuild their lives.
Numbers continue to grow because we do nothing to prevent it and nothing to stop it.
The issue shouldn’t be stopping refugees from coming into our countries. The issue should be not forcing them to leave their own.
a nother way – deep enough.. for all of us.
How much more suffering, how much more suffering must we take? How many more people need to be forced out of their homes before we say, “Enough!” A hundred million? Not only do we shame, blame and reject them for atrocities that they had absolutely nothing to do with, we re-traumatize them, when we’re supposed to be welcoming them into our countries. We strip them of their dignity and treat them like criminals.
We take in so few refugees worldwide. We resettle less than 0.1 percent. That 0.1 percent benefits us more than them.
It dumbfounds me how the word “refugee” is considered something to be dirty, something to be ashamed of. They have nothing to be ashamed of.
We have seen advances in every aspect of our lives except our humanity.
let’s do some of the serious things..
There are 65.3 million people who have been forced out of their homes because of war –the largest number in history. We are the ones who should be ashamed.
Helping Child Survivors of war rebuild their lives one step at a time.
Luma Mufleh (born March 1, 1975) is founder and director of Fugees Family, Inc., (“The Fugees”) a non-profit organization devoted to working with child survivors of war. Mufleh founded Fugees Family in 2006 and is currently head coach of the Fugees soccer teams.
Luma Mufleh was born in Amman, Jordan. She left Jordan to attend Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts in 1993. Mufleh graduated from Smith in 1997 with a B.A. in anthropology. She moved from Northampton to Boston to North Carolina to Atlanta, while working as a waitress, cook, grocery stock clerk, an office worker for a charity, and a freelance website designer. After she arrived in Atlanta, she started Ashton’s, a coffee shop and café, and coached boys’ soccer before founding the Fugees Family in 2004.
Fugees Family, Inc. (“The Fugees”) is a non-profit organization devoted to working with child survivors of war. The Fugees was cofounded by Luma Mufleh and Tracy Edigar, the Chief Operating Officer who directs all volunteers and educational activities for Fugees programs. The Fugees program has 86 refugee boys and girls ages 11–18 who attend twice-weekly soccer practices, play games on weekends, and participate in tournaments. Fugees Family has an after-school tutoring program, a 57-student middle school called Fugees Academy, and ongoing community events like car washes and group meals. The Fugees sign a strict contract outlining the rules for maintaining membership in the program.
The Fugees are from over 24 war-torn countries around the world, such as Burma, Bosnia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Cuba, Sudan, Somalia, Congo, and Eritrea. The Fugees are located in Clarkston, Georgia, a town of about 7,000 people a few miles outside of Atlanta. Over 61,000 refugees have been resettled in Georgia since 1981, with 2,824 arriving in 2008. Clarkston was chosen as a site for refugee resettlement due to its access to public transportation, cheap and plentiful housing, and proximity to Atlanta. Although not without controversy, the Fugees have been recognized for their efforts at fostering diversity, tolerance, and community building among both refugees as well as local residents of Clarkston and its surrounding neighborhoods.
Mufleh also started Fresh Start for America, a cleaning service that provides immigrant and refugee adults work opportunities that are non-exploitative (40 hours a week starting at $10 per hour). Each workday includes an hour of professional development, such as English-language training, finance, computer skills, and cleaning skills.