30 Oct 2015
EXCLUSIVE: Volunteers of an international aid organisation have raised over £5,000 to pay for the rent and accommodation of a disabled Syrian refugee in Jordan, without him even knowing.
Volunteers and staff from the Bradford-based Human Relief Foundation (HRF) charity travelled to Jordan as part of an aid work mission to help needy refugees.
It was there when they met Ghassan Al-Rihyal, whose house was bombed in 2011 as he tried to evacuate women and children away from attacks within the war-torn country.
He was left under the rubble for several hours and was forced to have both of his legs amputated.
Ghassan’s family was made up of five children, but he lost his eldest son after the bomb attacks.
He was then forced to travel in search of the best medical attention and said that the situation became so bad that people had “no choice but to eat stray cats and leaves.”
After four years, he was finally able to enter Jordan and is living as a refugee.
His family live in a one bedroom flat, which had been described as unsafe and run down.
After meeting him and hearing his story, volunteers spent the next night raising money to pay off Ghassan’s rent and the majority of his medical bills for the full year.
According to the JustGiving page set up for the appeal, a quarter of the money was raised in just one hour. Within two days, the target of £5,000 was reached.
The deployment team then paid Ghassan a visit at his home to tell him the good news.
He told them: “I do not feel neglected anymore. I feel like I have brothers and sisters. You have restored my faith in humanity and I will always remember you.”
One of the fundraisers who met him, said: “He was not even aware we were fundraising for him and cried tears of happiness. He said that he would never forget what we have done for him and he prayed lots for us and the donors.”