Aziz Al Houri with his wife told ACN after the ceremony: “We thank you for what you do. We are happy for our children. We will return our home!” Another young mother expressed her enthusiasm, as she hopes to give birth to her baby in her home, which is to be renovated. “We hope to return and God willing, we will return soon.”
The houses to be reconstructed were partially damaged and engineers at the spot professionally assessed the concrete needs case by case. A young architect-volunteer working on the project, Hala Mashhour, made no secret of the difficulties of this undertaking, but stressed its importance for the local community. She told ACN, how much she was happy to contribute for benefit of her country and in particular of her city. “I was excited with this project, because I would like to see Homs with a new face, shining with its beauty again”. Her own family rents a small apartment for six persons, which costs around $50 (25 000 SYP) per month.
The reconstruction effort was set to begin on the 1st May, the feast of St. Joseph the worker, this time around 100 houses are to be renovated in a venture that will cost about $350.000, funded by Aid to the Church in Need (ACN), a pastoral aid organization of the Catholic Church. One hundred is not a large number compared to the many more that are needed to eventually work on, but it is a significant number, as it is a concrete sign that Christian community in Homs is on its way to being rebuilt. Christians want to return home. Many of them would love to come back and some of them actually plan to benefit of the end of the school year to do it. Helping them in reconstruction of their destroyed homes will be key.
by Irmina Nockiewicz