“These princesses are a beacon of hope,” - Saint Hoax.views
As a result of the Syrian civil war, 4.6 million Syrians have become refugees. As a Syrian citizen myself and as a human, I felt the need to help. MALAAK, an NGO providing aid and education for Syrian refugees, granted me with the privilege to collaborate with a group of girls who are temporarily residing in a refugee camp in Akkar, Lebanon. “Once Upon a War” is the outcome of my life-altering encounter with these girls. Most of them never got the chance to play pretend because their reality is over dominating. It is why @PlastikStudios and I decided to throw a costume party in the camp. They got to dress up as their favorite Disney princesses and talk about their aspirations. These girls are real life heroines and I am honored that I got the chance to dream with them. As a celebration of International Women’s Day (March 8), we wanted the girls to document their lives over the next week. We gave them a Snapchat workshop, and they will be taking over my Snapchat account ( SaintHoax ) starting tomorrow to share their stories with the world. How you can help: Due to war and displacement, the education of most refugee girls is disrupted. This often leads to sexual and gender-based violence, increased risks of exploitation, and early marriage/pregnancy. It’s highly important to educate and empower girls in refugee camps. You can help by donating to @MalaakNGO (Link in bio). #OnceUponAWar
We had the most delightful experience with Aya (age 6). After we took her pictures, she sneaked into her house and changed into another dress. 10 minutes later, she came back to get her picture taken again. She told us “no one took pictures of me yet”. Of course we recognized her, but we took more pictures of her anyway. She loves being in front of the camera, and her dream is to become an actress. Beauty and the Beast is Aya’s favorite fairytale. She styled her hair to look exactly like Belle in this shot. @malaakngo @plastikstudios #OnceUponAWar
Cinderella is a dreamer and so is Maram (age 16). She believes in a brighter tomorrow. When we talked about the war, she managed to remember only the good parts out of this tragic experience. Maram loves kids and she takes care of most of the children at the camp. Her dream is to become a children’s nurse. Hiba (age 2) was born in Lebanon. She has never been to Syria and this is the only life she has ever known. She never watched any Cinderella film but her parents told her the story. When we showed her the Cinderella dress, she chose it out of all the other dresses. This was the first time that Hiba got to put on a costume and play pretend. @malaakngo @plastikstudios #OnceUponAWar
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