After a civil war broke out in 2011, more than 12 million Syrians have fled their homes. Men, women and children — families — left all of their possessions and life behind as they sought a safer place to call home.
Southern California Edison employees recently rallied to collect donations to help the refugees.
“We didn’t have any connection to the crisis,” said Jeffrey Lee, an SCE analyst. “We saw the suffering and wanted to help.”
Half of those who fled the Syrian crisis are children facing an extreme risk of malnourishment, exploitation and abuse. This year, 3,200 children have died and 1 million more have been wounded. And they all lack the basic necessities to survive.
SCE employees from multiple departments rallied together on Tuesday to collect toiletries, blankets and clothing. More than $13,000 in products were collected and 500 care packages were assembled.
Many employees wrote inspirational notes to include in the packages and several were written in Arabic.
“I had never seen ‘Edison’ written in Arabic before,” said SCE project manager Bob Dhala. “The event truly captures Edison’s spirit of banding together for a good cause.”
The items were delivered to Giving Children Hope, a nonprofit that provides wellness programs and disaster response for local and global communities.
The donations will be in the hands of refugees by the end of the year.
“The teamwork, passion and energy shown throughout the campaign is humbling,” said Melanie Salaiz, an SCE employee who helped organize the event. “It’s the people who make SCE a truly amazing company and it’s great to see us come together to help others in need.”