This week has a been a bit rough in the world of independent projects. After getting the taste of actually producing something from my research with the interview with Layth last week, I am eager to conduct another interview. However, if I have learned one lesson from this project, it is that things are almost always easier said than done. This wisdom has absolutely been the case for me this week. Immediately after interviewing Layth, I began looking for more potential candidates, ideally a Syrian refugee.
However, it was not until Teacher Pat reminded me that I realized that I had a very valuable resource well within my grasp. A Westtown alum actually immigrated to the United States and graduated a few years back. Following that discovery, I immediately reached out to him and am hoping to hear back from him sometime this week. However, it looks like I might have to wait a little longer to interview Mr Abarra. Moving to the United States and leaving behind Syria so recently has left him quite overwhelmed and traumatized, and both my contact, Mr Savage, and I agree that it is best to let him settle in a bit more before asking him to relive his experiences.
However, the possibility of interviewing Mr Abarra in the near future has set in a whole new bout of nerves. Though I have already drafted the interview questions, part of me still wonders if I am qualified to conduct this interview. After all, I am a young caucasian female, living in an upper middle class family, attending a private boarding school in one of the privileged countries in the world. I have never witnessed war, never experienced true hunger or poverty, never had to face the fear that every time one of my loved ones walked out the door could be the last. How could I possibly even begin to understand what Mr. Abarra has gone through? All I can say is that these peoples’ stories need to be told and I feel an urgency to help share them. Teacher Deb shared a poem with me earlier today written by a Syrian refugee, who I thought displayed these thoughts quite beautifully. You can find the poem here: http://www.evemarko.com/2016/04/22/what-i-was/
Until next week…