Mr. Ayoub’s story

by: Mark and Julie at Minority Humanitarian Foundation

This man was a dentist in Syria who raised Arabian horses to race and stud. He was a millionaire, living well and everything was good in his life. He belonged to the Catholic faith, a minority, but he had no problems until the war. When the war started things started going bad for him

They had some small problems at first, but it wasn’t anything they couldn’t deal with. Then one day a friend and him were going through a government checkpoint and they got stopped. They were harassed for being Catholic. The soldiers killed his friend, and turned to him. They said “we understand you’re a dentist”. They broke out all his teeth with a pipe and left him for dead. When they figured out he was still alive the government confiscated his bank accounts, and of his horses were all killed.

They sent a message and said if he didn’t leave the country they would kill everyone in his family. He was able to leave through a trek on foot that took him to Beirut, Lebanon. From there he went by air to Paris, by air to Brazil, and then by foot and hitchhiking to the American border.

He turned himself in at the border and in four months he was sent to six different detention centers. They fast-tracked his case and ordered him deported. He did a 30-day hunger strike protesting his case and treatment. On the 30th day the judge called for him to be brought to court. After he spoke the judge, the judge ordered for him to be released. He was released with no bond and no parole, and he is now being allowed to fight his case.

We met him by chance. We went to pick up another client, and he was being released that night at well. He looked scared and nervous so we asked him if he needed help. He said “yes I have no one here, I need to get to the train station to get to Los Angeles. My friend is there and he will let me stay the night.” We asked him if he had money and he said “no” so we told him we would send him in a Lyft. He didn’t know what a Lyft was. We explained, and he was basically in shock that we were helping him.

He told us he was trying to get to his family in New Jersey and we told him about Miles4Migrants. He didn’t believe us. But he called us the next day and Seth was able to find a donor to make this happen. Thank you to the donor who helped this man’s horrible journey finally come to an end.

Note: The miles given for this case were given in honor of Mark Ayoub, an incredible Miles4Migrants volunteer who died in July 2019. For the miles to then be used on a Syrian man with Mark’s last name, who had the same career as Mark’s late father, and who fled Syria for the US for the same reasons that Mark’s ancestors did 100 years ago is too incredible of a coincidence for us to fail to note it here.

How Miles4Migrants helps

We collaborate with a network of global non-governmental organization (NGO) partners who work directly with refugees and migrants to identify and verify individuals who are financially unable to afford air travel. Once our partners submit flight requests, we use donated frequent flyer miles, credit card points, travel vouchers, and cash to eliminate transportation barriers for the most vulnerable individuals affected by war, persecution, or climate disaster. Our goal is to help these individuals reunite with their loved ones and start a new life in a safe environment.

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– According to the United Nations, there are currently 108 million individuals forcibly displaced from their homes worldwide.  

– The Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that seeking asylum is a fundamental human right. Everyone has the right to life and liberty. Everyone has the right to freedom from fear. Everyone has the right to seek asylum from persecution.

As migration is often the last option for survival, migrants may embark on clandestine journeys, subject to danger, extortion, and inhumane conditions

Once they finally get legal approval for resettlement, migrants face another challenge that makes the journey seem impossible: the transportation costs.

There are many ways for you to get involved and help us continue our work:

You can donate cash to help us cover operational expenses or contribute your unused air miles, credit card points, or travel vouchers to help us book flights for refugees and asylum seekers. Additionally, you can help us spread the word about our cause and our impact on the lives of those we serve.

Every donation, no matter how big or small, has the power to make a difference. Thank you for considering supporting our mission.

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