Louai's Story


Syrian Louai Abbara, his wife and son were brought to Salisbury in June 2016. Fourteen-year-old Abdul had been receiving chemotherapy in a hospital in Jordan and UNICEF stepped in and transferred the family to Wiltshire so Abdul could receive further treatment.

Louai, a maths teacher, has always worked and been active, so sitting at home was never going to be an option for him. He enrolled in college with his wife to learn English and adapt to their new lives in a country that was different in so many ways to where he had come from.

Culturally it was very important for Louai to go to work every day, so he started volunteering at The Trussell Trust’s Furniture Restoration and Upcycling project in Salisbury. Getting dressed for ‘work’ in the morning gave Louai a purpose again and soon he found that, not only was his English improving, but he also enjoyed learning new skills and getting to know people socially.

Louai enjoys his time volunteering at The Trussell Trust because he feels part of a bigger family. He also values the opportunity to give something back to the community that has welcomed and helped his family. Knowing that the furniture he is restoring will aid the fundraising efforts of the charity has also been very significant to him.

Abdul is recovering well and is back in school and the family has settled well into their new life.

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