A somewhat more constructive version of overseas aid than some you see in the world of politics and the media.
Embrace has been working in war-torn countries for many years. Often people urgently need food, access to safe water or medical supplies. But sometimes what people need is a second chance. A chance for someone whose life has been devastated to build themselves up again when everything has been taken away.
When we met JoJo, pictured above with his family, that’s exactly what he was desperate for. A chance to start again after ISIS took everything he had. JoJo is from Iraq and although I wouldn’t say JoJo is a proud man, I think you will understand why he says that he doesn’t want hand-outs.
JoJo used to live in a small town in northern Iraq. It was a friendly town, the kind of place where everybody knows everybody and where there was also a strong Christian community. Running a small local business JoJo worked hard providing for his family. His mobile cobbler stall provided a good living and his children were doing well in school.
But that is all in the past. In the blink of an eye everything changed.
When ISIS captured the Christian town of Teleskuf, JoJo and his family had no choice but to flee for their lives.
‘They came and took everything away,’ JoJo told us.
JoJo is desperate to get back on his feet again. He wants to be the breadwinner for his family that he always was. Without his income, his family can’t survive. JoJo doesn’t want hand-outs. He knows how to run a small business. He knows how to be successful, but he needs help to get started.
People like JoJo and his family are still facing abject poverty. They have spent years away from their home running from place to place, dealing with crisis after crisis – trying to keep safe. But a helping hand to get his business started again would give his family security and JoJo’s children could go back to school.
Embrace is one of those charities you seldom hear about. Until recently they were known as "The Bible Lands Society", and you may have gone carol singing or been to a carol service where the words were on the Bethlehem Carol Sheet, in which case you were using an Embrace resource (in the modern parlance). Embrace has been working in the Middle East for more than a century, but I doubt, Dear Reader, that you even knew it existed ?
I, personally, support Embrace, if you feel you would like to know more please follow the hyperlink.