Ajeebullah lived in a massive Internal Displacement Camp of thousands of Afghans living as refugees within their own country. An American base located nearby, began to offer English lessons to the children. Ten-year-old Ajeebullah accepted the offer and soon earned a nickname from the soldiers: Scrappy. When he arrived in the US, we understood why. This is a boy of determination and keen sense of humor. It became his plan for survival within the terrible conditions. While in treatment, a volunteer asked him about his favorite childhood memory. Scrappy’s quick reply was the day a camel wandered into his family’s area of the camp. He recalled how quickly the camel was captured and roasted. He ended with the joyful announcement that he and his friends went to bed with a full belly that night. Scrappy participated in the Summer Medical Program in 2010 receiving dental treatment and leadership training.
Now sixteen-year-old Scrappy lives at Solace Peace House Academy where he is well-nourished and studying at the 9th grade level. He attends art and Dari classes. Dari will be his 3rd language, along with English and his native language Pashtu. Scrappy is a great cricket player and plays for the school team. He has earned an Academy privilege of going to a fitness club in the evenings after he completes his studying.
Many of our Lake Norman volunteers got to know this young man while he was here in the US. Solace’s Summer Medical Program not only helps the youth who participate, but also serves the volunteers who provide for these youths. Our host families, medical professionals, coordinators and administrators gain a great understanding of how hard we work to succeed in our mission, but also know how gratifying it can be to participate.