Feature: Syrian woman with physical impairments wishes for opportunities, not sympathy

Source: Xinhua| 2018-12-03 21:19:25|Editor: xuxin
Video PlayerClose

DAMASCUS, Dec. 3 (Xinhua) -- People with physical impairments need opportunities to be an active part in the society, not sympathy, said Roa Hamzeh, who is on a wheelchair.

The Syrian woman expressed her belief that this group of people can do great things if they were granted opportunities to show their real strength.

Hamzeh moves outside her house on a wheelchair while she manages to stand up with the help of her mother. She suffers a post-birth situation that put her under the knife in countless surgeries, but without a solid treatment to make her walk independently so far.

Unlike many girls who prefer to stay inside their bedrooms, Hamzeh said her favorite part of the house is the kitchen, where she spends times writing volunteering pieces about disabled people online.

Aside from her volunteer work, the woman has a day job at a government institution near the house in the Sehnaya suburb of the capital Damascus.

She has also participated in many events held for the people with special needs and was a supervisor once on a humanitarian project for such people in her neighborhood.

In spite of the fact that her mobility is a problem for her, the woman has a special glow in her eyes, which are beaming with a mix of determination and hope.

For her, the International Day for Disabled Persons is an occasion on which she wants to deliver a message to the community and the world that she and other people in her situation have unique powers and that they could do a lot more than being patronized or marginalized.

Wearing her brown hair simple and sliding over her shoulder-less fashionable pink sweater over a pair of sky-blue jeans and sneakers, Hamzeh told Xinhua that one of her dreams is to become a media person to be able to have her voice heard.

"My dream never ends because I want to be a role model for every person with a disability," she said.

The woman elaborated that "my dream of becoming a media person is to deliver the message of every person with a disability. My biggest dream is to have a center to help the people with impairments and to see their demands and needs."

Hamzeh said that she always feels challenging due to her situation, which gives her the power to pursue her dreams.

"Nothing for me is impossible. I want to break the barrier between me and my situation as I am now in a competition and challenge between my aspiration and my situation," she said.

"The disability is not the impairment of the brain or body. It's the disability of the morals, and the impairment of the society, which is hindering us through its perspectives, treatment and rejection of us," she stressed.

As Syria's prolonged war has affected her determination to a point, she was left discouraged for some time.

She said many projects about the people with special needs have been postponed during the war and many health centers have been either destroyed or closed, which affected those who were receiving medical treatment.

Hamzeh added that "I personally had lost hope for some time that I could ever move on in my education or work. My dreams during that time dwindled to the hope of just being safe along with my family."

On the occasion of the International Day for Disabled Persons, the woman hoped for all the disabled people to have bright futures.

"I wish good for all the people with disabilities and may all the doors of life and roads be open for them because truly we deserve to be in a suitable place for us," she hoped.