AMNA's children IMAGINED BY HANI ABBAS. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, HANI ABBAS FOR SEP, APRIL 2016.
Abdallah is a child who suffered from a rare liver disease. His mother Amna suffered with him and endured a lot of pain throughout his illness.
Amna is 40 years old, she completed her secondary education but never worked before. She was married for 22 years and has 4 daughters and a boy named Mazen, besides her son Abdallah.
Amna is grateful for her family’s little home but says that things haven’t been easy for her and her kids. Her husband neglected them, ended up re-marrying and accumulating debt: Amna felt alone and crushed by the burden to provide for her family and Abdallah’s treatments.
Unfortunately, things didn’t look up for Amna for many years. Her family had no health insurance and every health center she took Abdallah to requested tests and prescribed medications that she could not afford “I could barely afford the transport to the clinic, let alone the prescribed medicines and tests” Amna Said.
Amna tried and tried again but she failed: no organization she reached out to responded positively. Abdallah passed away at age 8. “He’s a bird in heaven” Amna says when she’s asked about her son “that’s what happens to innocent children when they die”.
Her son’s death left Amna feeling helpless and depressed for a while. She says she never wants to feel that way again, the helplessness especially. As Amna was dealing with her grief, she heard about SEP. She says it is one of the main reasons she now lives a debt free life. Amna said that being in debt had pulled her and her daughters down; they all feel much lighter now. The motto that Amna lives by and always utters is the following: “He who fears God, will always be given a way”. And she is happy that God’s way has led her to the path of making beautiful works of embroidery.
When asked what her dream is, Amna gives us the answer we have heard before: she has no dreams for herself; she just hopes the best for her children. Mazen, her younger boy, was born with a congenital malformation; the eye operation he needs - to get out of a negative loop with other children mocking him for his looks and him losing his temper - is costly: this surgery is the investment that Amna hopes to be able to afford at some point in the future.
What SEP says about Amna: Amna is one of the most proactive producers we work with. She calls the manager every day asking for more work. After an initial probation period with SEP, in which she got used to our quality control requirements, she has grown into a very dependable, persevering, accurate artist. Embroidery is a mirror of the artist’s soul: we can see from her work that her state of mind is steadily improving, along with her financial situation.
By Nada Aradeh and Shuhd Al Sharki