His Holiness Patriarch Mor Ignatius Aphrem II stated: “It is better to teach someone how to fish than to give him a fish.”
His Holiness’ statement came during the opening of the workshops of “My profession is My life” Project in Jaramana. This is one of many ‘early recovery’ and ‘restoration of livelihood’ projects which is executed by EPDC and St. Jacob Baradeus Church in collaboration with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP). It aims at providing new job opportunities to 65 families that are gravely affected by the crisis in Syria. The project is divided into two workshops: the first produces quilts, pillows and blankets while the other is for diverse wool products used for winter clothes and accessories.
The opening was attended by their Eminences Archbishops Mor Dionysius Jean Kawak, Patriarchal Assistant and General Manager of EPDC, Mor Timotheos Matta Al-Khoury, Patriarchal Secretary and Financial Manager of EPDC, along with Very Rev. Raban Cyril Babi, Very Rev. Raban Barsom Kando, Parish priest of St. Jacob Baradeus Church and Very Rev. Raban Joseph Bali, Patriarchal Secretary and Media Office Director, as well as Mr. Shady Sarweh, Executive Director of EPDC and other staff, volunteers and a number of families of the area.
His Holiness was given a tour of the premises and was introduced to the different stages of production. He met with the workers and assured them that the project is their own and it is a new beginning for them that allows them to rely on themselves. He added that the production of this workshop will be distributed to families affected by the crisis and to the needy families.
It is worth mentioning that this project is part of a series of projects undertaken by EPDC about ‘early recovery’ and ‘restoration of livelihood’ programs. The first project was: “Keep it clean” which provided 100 job opportunities and aimed at improving health and hygiene conditions in the suburbs of Damascus.
As part of its plans to expand the framework of its humanitarian response and its relief work which include the majority of Syrian areas, EPDC took the initiative of distributing food parcels to families in Bludan, in collaboration with local civil society.
This project is among several projects executed by EPDC to promote the Syrian citizen’s ability to respond to the crisis and to support their efforts to stay in their country Syria.