Eman AlShayab

Courage, resilience, and hope for a better future

Eman grew up in Daraa, in southern Syria, in a large family of eleven sisters and five brothers. While on vacation in 2012, age eleven, Eman and two of her sisters were hit by a blast from an bomb dropped overhead. Emam was the only survivor.  


In the blast, her leg was badly damaged. She was transported to a makeshift clinic where it was amputated below the ankle. In the arduous conditions of the clinic, her amputation was botched, as was a second operation carried out to correct the first. A third operation was necessary and resulted in further amputation to just below the knee. Eman returned to Daraa for seven months, but shortages of food and medicine forced her and her sister to flee to Jordan in June 2013. 


There she began to receive care, including expressive art therapy from the Polus Center prosthetic rehabilitation and trauma program.  Eman says that when she is painting her worries disappear and she is transported to a dream world where everything is happy. 


Now sixteen years old, Eman wants to use her art to spread awareness of the problems in Syria. Her dream is to become a famous artist, displaying her paintings in galleries around the world. She sees this exhibition as her first big step towards that dream. 


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