Child Sponsorship Highlight: Family Support

05/25/2021 Washington D.C. (International Christian Concern)As the oldest son of three children, Ramez Yousef carries a heavy burden of responsibility for an 8-year-old. With two younger sisters, ages 5 and 2, Ramez helps support his parents with their own jobs as well as caring for his siblings. Ramez shared plainly with ICC, “I buy our house items because I’m the older son, and I go with my father to his work.” His father is a spice trader, traveling around the local villages, selling the red peppers that their village is known for.

With public schools closed for a significant portion of the last year, Ramez spent more time at home. He shared his experiences saying, “I help my father with preparing the packages of salt, cumin, and chilies. I help my father load the goods. I also help my mother arrange the house. It has become very different from last year.” It is common for young boys like Ramez to help support their families when they are old enough to assist their fathers at their job. With young sisters, Ramez also bears the burden of caring for the home as they cannot do much to help yet. Christian families in Egypt are of a poorer, socio-economic class and rely on child labor oftentimes to get them through hard times. According to ICC’s research, the Christians of Ramez’s village experienced a 20% increase in reliance on child labor.

Despite the burden he bears with home responsibilities, Ramez is a stellar student overall. “[At the center] I learned the story of Thomas Edison, and how when he got out of school, his mother helped him to be a scientist. He invented the light bulb. I like the science subject,” he shared. He has historically scored very well academically, although during testing at the end of April he scored poorly on some subjects. Ramez currently dreams of becoming a police officer.

"My son Ramez is happy so much because of the center classes. He appreciates the Arabic teacher because she taught him the language."

Ramez’s mother told ICC, “the center classes are marked by the discipline and commitment, but the [public] school is not. When the kids go to Hope House, the teachers make sure they return home safe.” She continued on saying, “my son Ramez is happy so much because of the center classes. He receives so many lessons. He appreciates the Arabic teacher because she taught him the language.”

Ramez’s participation in the child sponsorship program helps not just with his continued education but also supports his physical health, financial needs like school fees, and nutritional needs via monthly food packages for the family.

Ramez and 59 other children are currently available for sponsorship. Would you consider helping Ramez reach his education goals and break the cycles of persecution?

To learn more about ICC’s Hope House or provide a financial gift, visit this page. To inquire about sponsoring a child, contact ICC at icc@persecution.org.

For interviews please contact Addison Parker: press@persecution.org

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