Professor Volunteers in Middle East


Dave Naze volunteers with Iraqi refugees. (PHOTO SUPPLIED)

Chicago Heights, IL–(ENEWSPF)– For years, his vacations were escapes to places where cares are few and comforts are many. This year, Dave Naze, Prairie State College (PSC) assistant professor of communication, went where cares are many and comforts are few.

Naze traveled more than 6,000 miles to Amman, Jordan, to volunteer with Iraqi refugees. Naze and a group of 18 people from the Living Word Church young adult group heeded a call to help more than 50 families who fled from Iraq because they were either threatened or someone in their family was killed.

“The experience was extremely exciting, eye opening, and life changing,” said Naze. “When you hear the refugees’ stories, you realize that even though our country is struggling with the economy, it pales in comparison to the issues halfway around the world.”

One of the main efforts during Naze’s trip was running a children’s summer camp for the refugees. More than 60 children ages 6-14 participated in the camp.

“It was great to experience the culture and work with the children,” said Naze. “We tried to do what we could for them. We gave them food and were there for them emotionally, but most of all, we tried to have fun.”

Naze found his experience interacting with the refugees very rewarding. He plans to travel back to the Middle East or another part of the world to volunteer and encourages others to do so.

“The people were extremely hospitable and went out of their way to make us feel welcomed,” said Naze. “My experience dispelled a lot stereotypes; it’s a trip everyone should consider.”