Nothing is Standing in Mulham's (14) Way of Achieving His Dreams

Like many refugee children in Lebanon, Mulham had to drop out of school and work to support his family. The days were long and arduous, yet he remained determined to pursue an education. That was apparent the moment he joined our Can't Wait to Learn programme...
Mulham a Syrian boy is back to study thanks to Can't Wait to Learn

"I became much better in mathematics, thanks to Can't Wait to Learn", says Mulham (14)

Photo: War Child

Street Seller

Mulham, who fled Syria to escape the escalating conflict, is one of thousands of young people globally who have been forced into work as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. He began selling tissues and chewing gum on the busy streets of Tripoli in North Lebanon. Sometimes, he would work for 15 hours in just one day.

The few Lebanese pounds that he managed to gather would help his family cover basic essentials such as bread and water - anything would do. Eventually, his father took over a vegetable stand owned by a family friend so Mulham left the streets and began helping.

On an average day, he stacks the vegetables, cleans and sprays them with water. This way, they stay fresh and appealing for customers. For an extra tip, he also carries the bags of vegetables to cars or houses.

Mulham is making his way into the future

Education Was Always The Goal

While the family's income increased, life was far from easy. Yet, Mulham was determined to make something of himself...

His friend Mahmoud attends classes at a nearby centre. Mulham tagged along once and decided to join on a regular basis. It wasn't long before he enrolled on Can't Wait to Learn - our innovative e-learning programme. "I instantly felt at home and enjoyed the sessions immensely", he says.

Even though he skips classes in order to work, Mulham always finds the time to catch up on his studies - all with the support of his facilitator.

“He was always the first to arrive at class - the first to raise his hand, the first to participate” says Fida, Mulham’s facilitator. “He is one of the best students we’ve ever had. I know he has a great future in front of him.”

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"Mulham has a strong will and he always makes up the lessons he misses" Fida, Mulham's facilitator says.

Photo: War Child

Big Dreams, No Doubts

By following the tablet-based educational games - even from home during nationwide lockdowns - Mulham finally learned how to read and write as well as solve maths problems. He takes what he has learnt and applies it to his work by helping his father calculate the prices of the goods.

Mulham feels happy and content. On the one hand he is supporting his family, on the other he is getting an education - something he'd always dreamed of.

"I want to become a carpenter when I grow up. I love it!", says a smiling Mulham. "I want to learn the trade inside out and be the best at it. The education I'm receiving right now will help me do that. I have no doubts."