Students gather blankets for Syrians A boy tries to warm up on a beach with a blanket provided by volunteers. (AP Photo/Santi Palacios/Thinkstock)
Students gather blankets for Syrians
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Two Vermont students have made it their mission to help Syrians who remain in the war-torn country.
 
South Burlington High School students Lena Ginawi and Kiran Waqar are rounding up blankets to send to Syria to help the people still there.
 
Vermont Public Radio reports that Ginawi and Waqar are first-generation immigrants to the U.S. Their parents are from Egypt and Pakistan.
 
In addition to helping the Syrians, the girls, who are Muslim, wanted to combat some of the fear they've seen toward Muslims in general.  It has come as a result of attacks by some Islamic extremists, Ginawi said.
 
"(We're) showing that Muslims aren't actually part of this ISIS group.  And that we are actually trying to help," she said, using an acronym for the Islamic State group.
 
When Gov. Peter Shumlin of Vermont heard about their efforts, his office contacted businesses for help. He announced that a number of ski resorts and businesses have pledged support.
 
"At a time when the conversation about refugees often focuses on the worst of human emotions, Lena and Kiran are showing that the most powerful way to combat hatred and bigotry is with compassion," said Shumlin.  He has said Vermont should welcome Syrian refugees who have been thoroughly reviewed before being allowed to settle in the United States.
 
"Both are truly admirable young people and we are so lucky to call them Vermonters," he said.
 
The students are working with NuDay Syria. It's a New Hampshire-based group focused on humanitarian aid within Syria and in bordering areas.

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CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
The climate in Syria is dry and hot, and winters are mild, so why do people there need blankets?
Write your answers in the comments section below


COMMENTS (46)
  • Eric0221-YYCA
    1/13/2016 - 02:02 a.m.

    The students might have been caring about the people in a war-torn country because the students might have been caring a lot about the people who are suffering a lot in the war-torn country in Syria. The Syrian people are suffering a lot in the war-torn country because of the ISIS because the war is still raging on in Syria which the students might have cared about how poor the people are in Syria. The people in Syria might have poor that the students might have cared a lot about the people in Syria because war has been going on for a long time for the people in Syria to become free. The students might have been caring and kind about the Syrian people because they are becoming more poor because of the war that is going on at Syria.
    Critical Thinking Question: The climate in Syria is dry and hot, and winters are mild, so why do people there need blankets?
    Answer: Because people at Syria needed blankets so that they could be warm in the winter and also they are used to make Syrians to become comfortable.

  • Steve0620-yyca
    1/13/2016 - 04:08 p.m.

    I think that the South Burlington High School students Lena Ginawi and Kiran Waqar are doing a good and helpful thing. They are sending blankets to help the people in Syria. People in Syria might need blankets for warmth, comfort, or fun. Peter Shumlin is also trying to help the girls and he contacted some businesses and asked if they were willing to help. Some ski resorts and businesses have pledged support. These girls are also immigrants and they are also trying to change the idea about the fear of Muslims.

  • lucasd-3-bar
    1/13/2016 - 05:58 p.m.

    People need the blankets to help protect them from the sun and the heat, if it is extremely hot out. This article was interesting and I'm glad to see people helping the refuges!

  • lilyg-2-bar
    1/13/2016 - 10:13 p.m.

    People need blankets in Syria because they lost all their things during war and through attacks. "It has come as a result of attacks by some Islamic extremists." I think it is interesting that people are kind enough to start this organization because not all Muslims are part of Isis.

  • audreyv-4-bar
    1/14/2016 - 07:58 p.m.

    Syrians need blankets in the dry and hot weather, because it could provide protection and be used as something other than a blanket; for instance, like a mat or a cover.

    I found this article very interesting, because it shows how young students are trying to make a difference in a war by doing something as simple as providing blankets.

  • gabriellek-1-bar
    1/15/2016 - 12:20 a.m.

    People in Syria need blankets because there are a few who remain in the "war-torn country." I found this article interesting to find out that they are first generation migrants whose parents are from Egypt and Pakistan. This surprised me because I wonder if it was hard to move and come to the United States.

  • oliviam-6-bar
    1/15/2016 - 12:24 a.m.

    One reason that the people in Syria need blankets, despite the mild weather, is that they need protection from the heat. "The climate in Syria is dry and hot, and winters are mild." This kind of heat can really take a toll on people who do not have the necessary protection they need to keep themselves cool. Also, the hot sun can cause sunburns and other serious skin diseases such as skin cancer.

    Another reason someone might use a blanket is to shield themself from smoke and other debree "a result of attacks by some Islamic extremists." And the civil war in the "war-torn country" Syria is in right now.

  • TaylorSeifert-Ste
    1/16/2016 - 02:13 p.m.

    A lot of people seem to look at the Muslim religion and only see the work of ISIS; they take a whole group of people and judge them according to what another group did, claiming it was in the name of that religion. Lena and Kiran are proving people wrong, showing them that not all Muslims are bad. In the same way, people could look at America, as they think we are so mighty and powerful, and realize that not all Americans are good.

  • tiffanyf-1-bar
    2/05/2016 - 01:37 a.m.

    People of Syria need blankets even thought the weather is mild is to provide at least some kind of protection or shelter. Also by gifting them with blankets,"(They're) showing that Muslims aren't actually part of (the) ISIS group." This helps people recognize that these innocent citizens aren't harmful and aren't related to the ISIS group. I thought this article was interesting because I was very thoughtful for the students from Vermont to donate blankets for these desperate people.

  • madisons.-tay
    2/29/2016 - 12:10 p.m.

    People might need blankets to protect them from the heat.

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