Ayman's story

Ayman (14) had a hard time at school four years ago, while living with his parents, brother, sister, and grandmother in a refugee camp in the Gaza. Then his grandmother told him about the You Lead project, and everything started to change.

“I left the school because I was very afraid of my teacher,” he says, “My teacher hit me many times on my head, my hands and my legs. I hated the school then and I left it.”Ayman has been out of school ever since.

Overcoming physical abuse
Ayman’s grandmother heard about the You Lead project while attending an activity at a local organisation. She asked Ayman’s father to register him. When Sara, the facilitator working with Ayman’s group, heard about Ayman’s experiences, she first consulted a psychologist: “Ayman had been subject to physical abuse at school, his academic performance was poor and he had difficulties with reading, writing and in fitting in with his peers.

“Before I admitted him to the group, I consulted a psychologist who works at the centre (where the You Lead activities take place) and she told me that it would be good for Ayman to engage in the activities and play with other children.”

Future dreams
Ayman joined the activities and has had a good experience so far. “I met new friends and learned new things, like how I can identify my goal in life and how I present myself to others.” In fact, his experience has been so positive that he even wants to become a teacher: “I want to be a teacher like the You Lead teachers who respect me,” he says.

Read more about the You Lead project or our work in occupied Palestinian territory.