From life as refugee to a Master Facilitator
Ruba Rahme is a Syrian-Palestinian refugee now living in Lebanon. She is a Master Facilitator for the Aswat Faeela project.
“I was living in Al Yarmouk refugee camp in Damascus before moving to Lebanon in 2013, two years after the conflict erupted in Syria. When I arrived, I began working as an Arabic language teacher for Syrian refugees and volunteered with several organisations with a focus on improving relations between host and refugee communities.”
“The changing power of youth”
“Two years ago I set up the ‘Refugee troupe for heritage and folklore arts‘ alongside other partners, to bring together young people and children of different nationalities through music, theater and art” says Ruba.
You could see the spark in her eyes as she goes on describing how her troupe have already presented 21 artistic shows without any support or funding. They rehearsed everywhere: houses, other NGOs and even in the streets.
“Through my involvement with youth, I changed from being an exiled person seeking refuge to a positive leader”, she adds.
Ruba was able to supervise an artistic group of 20 Syrian, Palestinian and Lebanese girls and boys, and to gather these youngsters around something that can be beneficial for them. “This is where Aswat Faeela project comes along”, she affirms.
As a firm believer in the changing power of youth, Ruba believes that the troupe’s participants are one great example of community builders who will lead on positive transformations in society and who will initiate useful social action.
A Leading Woman
What gives Ruba a bigger push, is that she is a young woman who is leading. Although her troupe’s participants are sometimes confronted with a recurring question “How is it possible that a girl is leading you?”, Ruba pushed her work forward and was able to create great and positive impact.
“I am not alone in being subjected to this kind of questioning. Women are always confronted with a WHY. Why are you here? Why are you leading?”
As a master facilitator, Ruba aims to gather her troupe’s and other local organisations’ energy into well consolidated efforts and get them involved in collective social actions in their communities, to come up with innovative solutions for daily challenges.
“I want youth to have an independent and impactful role.
This is my aim and this is where Aswat Faeela will support me”