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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 12 December 2018

UAE Helping Hands: Mother pleads for a job opportunity to get her family back on their feet

Abeer Ibrahim's husband was the family's sole provider, but was paralysed when he suffered a stroke

Abeer Ibrahim’s husband became paralyzed after a stroke in 2014, leaving her as the sole provider for her two boys, Abdulrahman,10, (L) and Hagir,11.
Abeer Ibrahim’s husband became paralyzed after a stroke in 2014, leaving her as the sole provider for her two boys, Abdulrahman,10, (L) and Hagir,11.

It’s not been an easy few years for Sudanese mother of two Abeer Ibrahim since a stroke left her husband paralysed and unable to work.

That lack of regular income has forced Mrs Ibrahim, 42, into a difficult situation where she had to juggle caring for her husband, Amir Abdulla, and children - whilst also trying to find work herself.

The couple arrived in the UAE in 2005, and settled in the country with their two children Adulrahman, 10 and Hajar, 12.

Both boys have since been expelled from school because of unsettled tuition fees, as the family struggles to stay afloat.

“If you give me a Dh100,00, it will eventually run out, what I need is job to keep my children alive,” said Mrs Ibrahim.

“My husband worked in human resources and he had just moved jobs when he had the stroke so he wasn’t entitled to any end of term benefit.”

For the past four years, Mrs Ibrahim said their lives have become unbearable, as the family have struggled to make ends meet.

Whatever savings they had soon ran out.

“For months on end we lived in a car,” she said. “We had no money for rent or food. I would do anything to earn some money to have food on the table and a roof over our heads.”

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Mr Abdulla requires regular physiotherapy during his recovery and rehabilitation, but that is expensive and something they were struggling to afford.

They made the difficult decision for him to return to Sudan alone, where his extended family can care for him.

Mrs Ibrahim, who has a higher diploma in accounting, began offering car lifts and cooking to earn some money.

She has also been studying for a diploma in school management to improve her chances of securing a full-time job. So far, her applications have been unsuccessful.

“I need a stable job,” she said.

“That is the only way to get my children out of this suffocating situation.

“I did a few part time jobs like helping with statistics and surveys. That helped for a few months but then we were back to square one again.

“My husband's family said they had no means to take me and my children in also, I completely understand.

“We would be too much of a burden and they are not very well off.

“I am on only child and my mother is here with me. She is very old and I am caring for her as best as I can, so it is difficult for everyone.

“I want to be strong for my kids, but life has become so tough. I don’t sleep at night and can’t stop crying.

“Every time my children come to me to ask me for the most basic things like clothes or food, my heart breaks.

“I can’t provide them with anything anymore and I don’t want charity. I want to stand on my own two feet and feel safe again,” she said.

Hisham Al Zahrani, manager of Zakat and Social Services at Dar Al Ber, is appealing for any businesses who may be able to offer Mrs Ibrahim a job, so she can once again support her family.

“This time we are asking for assistance in finding Ms Ibrahim a job,” he said.

“Please contact Dar Al Ber or The National if there is any job opportunity for Mrs Ibrahim.”

salnuwais@thenational.ae