Created: Thu, 05 Sep 2013 04:45:00 EST
Updated: Thu, 05 Sep 2013 11:56:08 EST
The turmoil in Syria hits close to home for a least one student in Middle Georgia.
Lena Hamvas' is a senior at Mercer University studying global health. Her history runs deep in Syria. Her great-grandfather was the president of the country in 1957. This summer she got a chance to work with a non-government organization to help Syrian refugees in Jordan cope with the emotional toll the ongoing conflict is taking.
"I learned more about what is really going on in Syria from the people," said Hamvas right near the campus of Mercer University.
Hamvas still has family in Syria, family that won’t leave the country due to their undying love for it. For that reason, Lena wanted to get a close to the country as possible to help where she could without being in immediate danger. She spent three weeks of her time out of school counseling refugees with a non-governmental organization.
"I have always wanted to help with the Syrian Issue, what was going on because my family is from there and I have always visited Syria," she said.
Lena’s great grandfather president of Syria in 1957 and she has visited the country seven times in her lifetime, which helped her warm up to refugees with ease. This time her travel to Middle East was with a mission in mind.
"We drove around to houses where Syrian refugees were staying and we spoke to them about the N.G.O.,” she said. "They help them with psychological problems. They wanted them to talk about their problems so they would feel a little bit better about what's going on."
The video is of a Syrian refugee girl living in the refugee camp, Camp Zataari, in Jordan the second largest refugee camp in the world. Giving Lena insight she calls unimaginable.
"In the news we don't really get the perspective of the refugee, in general,” she said. “Refugees in Amman are hopeful. They believe that god will bring them through. That's really what's getting them by."
Now Lena wants to help educated the masses on the Syrian refugee perspective. "What can we do to further again in this situation and refugees in general and how we can spread the word out to communities in America and abroad.”
“No matter what, who, or where it is, I am always against violence. In my head, there is never a reason for violent war,” said Hamvas when asked about United States military involvement in Syria.