First Summer Program of 2017-Thoughts and Reflections

"For ordinary people, war starts with a jolt: one day you are busy with dentist appointments or arranging ballet lessons for your daughter, and then the curtain drops. One moment the daily routine grinds on; ATMs work and mobile phones function.  Then, suddenly, everything stops.

Barricades go up.  Soldiers are recruited and neighbors work to form their own defenses.  Ministers are assassinated and the country falls into chaos.  Fathers disappear.  The banks close and money and culture and life as people knew it vanishes. "  

This was taken from Janine Di Giovanni's book reporting on the Syrian Civil War titled The Morning They Came For Us: Dispatches From Syria.   I wanted to start with this, because to me, these two paragraphs truly encapsulate how war starts and how it alters the life for everyday civilians.  Once the fighting starts, it is often already too late for families to leave.  However, those who make the incredibly hard decision to uproot their families and become refugee's, they often lose a sense of normality to their life.  

Taking part in our first summer program this year, I instantly recalled the passages that I opened this blog post with.  Those who have become refugees have had their 'normalcy' stolen from them, at no fault of their own.  On Sunday's for the next five weeks, Chords of Peace will be spending time in Yonkers, working along with our Sarah Lawrence College friends.  The feeling that I left with yesterday, was a feeling of great joy.  This program that Chords of Peace happens to be a part of, in my opinion, offers a sense of normalcy- a true "Sunday Funday." One spent with adults and their children, from many different countries, engaging in conversation, enjoying the outdoors along the Hudson River, eating delicious food, and playing some music!