The president is Joan Babeli, who has taken 35 relatives of him from the Syrian hell
Gemma Camps 11/04/2018 | 00:05
Joan Babeli and Montse Pinyot, two of the drivers of Horizon for Syrians.
Joan Babeli has lived in Catalonia for almost 40 years. Established in Artés, he fled his country, from Syria, just before joining the military service. With the support of friends and neighbours, 35 family members have helped them out of the Syrian hell: brothers, nephews and their partners, cousins, children of cousins … Now, he wants to help Syrian children who are in refugee camps in situ, taking the help there. On the one hand, offering musical training and, on the other, bringing musical instruments to the refugee camps. For this, he has promoted the Horizon For Syrians association with a group of friends.
Montse Pinyot is one of the people who, in a totally disinterested way, helps Babel in this project, which is born after the visits he has made in refugee camps. In 2013-2014, he went to camps in Lebanon, Turkey and Jordan and last year to camps in Akkar, in northern Lebanon, where there are close to one million refugees (ACNUR, 2017). There, he came across the harshest reality: children «illiterate, stressed, without the north», some of whom prostitute themselves to survive.
Horizon For Syrians, which has a hard core of 17 people and 40 collaborators, is chaired by Babel and vice-president Carlos McCragh, dean of the Girona Bar Association and president of the LiberPress Humanitarian Association, which traveled with him in Lebanon in 2017.
The initiatives that have been launched are articulated in three lines. On the one hand, that a hundred children – Syrian refugees and some of Lebanese without resources – who will select professional musicians from Catalonia and Lebanon can study music and go to school once. The intention is to pay it with private contributions and that companies can make a contribution of 500 euros a year for a minimum of three years to sponsor the training of one of these children, which will be in charge of the music school of the Lebanese Popular Relief of Halba ( north of Lebanon).
The support of Jordi Savall
Another helpline also has to do with music. It’s about collecting instruments that people do not need, but that work, that will serve to teach music to refugees in the camps through teachers who are also refugees and others from Lebanon. In this case, Horizon For Syrians has the complicity of the bar associations of Catalonia for the citizens to take the instruments to their headquarters.
For these two projects, Horizon For Syrian has the support of the musician Jordi Savall and the collaboration of Syrian musicians of his orchestra, who have offered to travel to Lebanon periodically to check that everything works correctly and to evaluate the evolution of the students.
The third line is to collect funds. With this objective, on February 21 a solitary evening has been organized in the Parisien room of Barcelona, which will include a Syrian dinner and show. It will cost 45 euros (information on www.horizonforsyrians.org). Before, on November 23, there will be a charity concert in Artés.
The association also works to send to Lebanon unused coaches that work to take refugee children to school, and pick up orthopedic products and waterproof protectors for mattresses and pillows.
See the original news in the newspaper of Central Catalonia: Regió-7