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Bridging Dreams: A Coaching Journey of Gratitude

Sandra Halabi's testimony - former coach at LP4Y Lebanon

Graduation ceremony on September 2023

I still vividly remember my first visit to the Training and Development Center of Bourj Hammoud. The narrow streets, the warm and welcoming greetings of the shopkeepers made me feel as if I had known them forever. When I stepped into TDC Beirut, I had a deep sense that it wouldn't be my last and just one-time visit.

My arrival coincided with the C4C program, where I witnessed over 40 small children receiving training from inspiring young ladies. Their responsibility and multitasking abilities left a lasting impression. As my days passed during my coaching mission with LP4Y, my initial impression continued to grow.

Sandra sitting with Youth during a training session

One of the things I admired in my mission is the "Home Visits" which usually give us a chance to see the environment where the youth are living. I was always amazed by the kind-hearted parents who spoke warmly about LP4Y and their gratitude for the opportunities it provided to their children. Their stories never fail to mark an impact on my personal life like the one I will share below.

Upon entering the home of Sidra, a youth at TDC Beirut, her mother warmly greeted me with an embrace, making me feel like her own daughter, despite our first meeting. As I prepared to sit with Sidra's family on a small carpet, a little girl, not more than 5 years old, ran over and hugged me tightly, providing a beautiful interruption filled with love.

The mother expressed her gratitude for the opportunities her daughter had received through LP4Y. However, her focus remained on her children and the hardships they endured, having fled from war-torn Syria to Lebanon. I was deeply moved, listening to her story and empathizing with her experiences, amazed by her resilience. In response, I asked a simple yet profound question: "And you Fattoum (her name), how do you feel?"

Sandra at Sidra's home for a family visit

With a small, heartfelt smile and tears in her eyes, she looked at me and said, "I am good now. Do you know what my dream is?" Her response caught me by surprise, and I felt a mix of emotions as I inquired further about her dream. She answered without hesitation, "My dream is to find someone who can write down my life story because I am illiterate, and I believe that what I have lived deserves to be shared. It’s like a movie!" Her words left me both curious about her story and apprehensive about what I might hear.

I may not possess the writing skills to effectively convey all the information that Fattoum shared with me to the audience. However, if you happen to know a proficient writer or someone talented in crafting documentaries, I am more than willing to facilitate the connection between Fattoum and that person.

Sandra, Laëtita and Sidra during the Life Project Presentation event

I wish I could articulate my emotions more precisely, but all I can say is that I deeply appreciate the opportunity to share with you this story and play a significant role in bridging Fattoum's dream. I did not expect better than this ending to wrap up my coaching journey in LP4Y which was absolutely full of gratitude and inspiration!

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