September 17, 2021

SMH

Santa Maria History

Kansas City families helping Gaza student attend college in U.S.

BEFORE MOHAMMED CAMTOE KANSAS CITY. HE HAD NEVER LEFT GAZA AND WHEN I GOTHERE T I COULDN’T BELIEVE MYSELF THAT I WAS REALLY HERE. HE ATTENDED PEMBROKE HILLS A AN EXCHANGE STUDENT IN 2017 SPLITTING THE YEAR BETWEEN TWO HOST FAMILIES MUHAMMAD IS THE CLOSEST THING I HAVE TO A BROTHER HIS HOST SISTER KATE MORTHINGTON GOT TO INTRODUCE HIM TOIF LE IN AMERICA WHEN HE CAME WANTED TO IMMSEER HIMSELF IN EVYER POSSIBLE ASPECT OF AMERICAN LIFE. SO EY K PLAYED SOCCER. HE PLAYED BASKETBALL. HE BINGE WATCHED ALL TNEE SEASONS OF FRIENDS. NOW BACK IN GAZA.S. THE RECENT CONFLICT HAS BEEN RITGH OUTSIDE MUHAMMAD’S DOOR THIS VIDEO SHOWS WHERE A BOMB STRUCK 150 FEET FROM HIS HOME. I DID NOT KNOW IF I WAS GONNA BE ALIVE IN THE NEXT MOMENT OR NOT BECAUSE THAT’S JUSTOW H YEAH, THAT’S JUST HOW HARD IT WAS BEFORE THE CEASEFIRE. IUL FLY COULD NOT SLEEP LE IKI WOULD STAY UP. LATE AT NIGHT. JUST CRYING AS HIS HOST FAMILIES WORRY FOR HIS SAFETY FROM ACROSS THE GLOBE. THEY’R’ WORKING TO HELP HIM ACHIEVE HIS DREAM OF ATTENDING CO LLEGE IN THE US SETTING UP A GOFUNDME TO HELP COVER COSTS COMING TO THE US MEANS A LOT OF OPPORTUNITIES BASICALLY AND A LOT OF OPPORTUNITIES, ESPECIALLY FOR PEOE PLWHO ARE WILLING TO WORK HARD FOR THEM. HE’S JUSTO S RESILIENT. HE REALLY HAS SHOWN ME THAT KE,LI YOU CAN DO ANYTHING IF YOU PUT YROU M

Kansas City families helping Gaza student attend college in US

Mohammad Abuajwa was an exchange student at Pembroke Hill and hopes to return to the states.

A Gaza teen who studied as an exchange student in Kansas City is hoping to return to the U.S. for college. KMBC spoke with his host families in the metro about how they’re helping to make it happen. Before Mohammad Abuajwa came to Kansas City, he had never left Gaza. “When I got there, I couldn’t believe myself that I was really here,” he said via Zoom from his home in Gaza. He traveled to Kansas City as an exchange student in 2017 to attend Pembroke Hill for his junior year. “It was a beautiful city, I loved everything about it,” he said. Mohammad split his year between two host families, one of which was fellow student Kate Northington’s. “Mohammad is the closest thing I have to a brother,” she said. Northington got to introduce him to life in America. “When he came wanted to immerse himself in every possible aspect of American life… he played soccer, he played basketball,” she said. “he binge-watched all 10 seasons are friends,” Northington laughed. “We were very impressed about his, his work ethic,” said Carmen Blatter Pfluger, whose family also hosted Mohammad. She said she learned just as much from him as he did from her family. “It was good to share, it gives an understanding which you didn’t have before,” she said. “it’s good to have this perspective and it’s mind opening, it widens the horizon.”Now back in Gaza, the recent conflict has been right outside Mohammad’s door. Video shared with KMBC 9 shows where a bomb struck 150 feet from his home. “It was scary,” he said. “I did not know if I was gonna be alive in the next moment or not because that’s just how, that’s just how hard it was.” He added, “There’s been a lot of nights where the bombardments just kept going on and on.” “Before the ceasefire, I fully could not sleep,” said Northington. “I would stay up late at night, just crying.” She added, “I think a lot of people, even people that knew Mohammed while he was here, think, ‘oh, it’s sort of removed from us’… it’s just very scary to hear all the things that are happening there when he is so close to all of it.” As Mohammad’s host families worry for his safety from across the globe, they’re working to help him achieve his dream of attending college in the U.S. “Coming to the U.S. means a lot of opportunities… especially for people who are willing to work hard for them,” said Mohammad. He’s been accepted at Bridgewater University in Virginia, and his host families in KC have set up a GoFundMe to help cover costs. “I know his hard work, he’s been studying a lot and he deserves that,” Blatter Pfluger said. “He’s resilient,” said Northington. “He really has shown me that you can do anything if you put your mind to it.” Mohammad hopes to major in environmental studies or computer science. If you’d like to donate to his GoFundMe page, click here.

A Gaza teen who studied as an exchange student in Kansas City is hoping to return to the U.S. for college. KMBC spoke with his host families in the metro about how they’re helping to make it happen.

Before Mohammad Abuajwa came to Kansas City, he had never left Gaza. “When I got there, I couldn’t believe myself that I was really here,” he said via Zoom from his home in Gaza. He traveled to Kansas City as an exchange student in 2017 to attend Pembroke Hill for his junior year. “It was a beautiful city, I loved everything about it,” he said.

Mohammad split his year between two host families, one of which was fellow student Kate Northington’s. “Mohammad is the closest thing I have to a brother,” she said. Northington got to introduce him to life in America. “When he came wanted to immerse himself in every possible aspect of American life… he played soccer, he played basketball,” she said. “he binge-watched all 10 seasons are friends,” Northington laughed.

“We were very impressed about his, his work ethic,” said Carmen Blatter Pfluger, whose family also hosted Mohammad. She said she learned just as much from him as he did from her family. “It was good to share, it gives an understanding which you didn’t have before,” she said. “it’s good to have this perspective and it’s mind opening, it widens the horizon.”

Now back in Gaza, the recent conflict has been right outside Mohammad’s door. Video shared with KMBC 9 shows where a bomb struck 150 feet from his home. “It was scary,” he said. “I did not know if I was gonna be alive in the next moment or not because that’s just how, that’s just how hard it was.” He added, “There’s been a lot of nights where the bombardments just kept going on and on.”

“Before the ceasefire, I fully could not sleep,” said Northington. “I would stay up late at night, just crying.” She added, “I think a lot of people, even people that knew Mohammed while he was here, think, ‘oh, it’s sort of removed from us’… it’s just very scary to hear all the things that are happening there when he is so close to all of it.”

As Mohammad’s host families worry for his safety from across the globe, they’re working to help him achieve his dream of attending college in the U.S. “Coming to the U.S. means a lot of opportunities… especially for people who are willing to work hard for them,” said Mohammad.

He’s been accepted at Bridgewater University in Virginia, and his host families in KC have set up a GoFundMe to help cover costs. “I know his hard work, he’s been studying a lot and he deserves that,” Blatter Pfluger said.

“He’s resilient,” said Northington. “He really has shown me that you can do anything if you put your mind to it.”

Mohammad hopes to major in environmental studies or computer science. If you’d like to donate to his GoFundMe page, click here.