A little over a week ago, Ali was injured when a car raced through a red light near an Interstate and hit his car, causing it to roll over twice. He was taken to the hospital, where he was for six days. He suffered a concussion and some deep cuts to his leg and will be undergoing physical therapy.
It could have been much worse, it nearly was.
Although he was supposed to stay home for a couple of weeks, Ali got antsy away from his kids and came back today. He got a very special welcome. Apart from a pronounced limp, he hid is pain and discomfort well.
I went to Albany to see him, turn over some money for a birthday party he is planning for this weekend for two of the team members, and also photograph his return.
You can feel the relief and joy and love in this photography, I could practically touch it with my bare hands.
Some people are born to teach and Ali is one of them. He loves the children at RISSE, and they love him, they were so relieved to see him, they hung all over him and some came to see him in the hospital and cried when they saw he was hurt.
Some of these children need special help, and Ali and I and Brother Francis are talking about how to help them.
Please be patient a bit, I will be more specific in the coming weeks.
Bureaucracies take time to work things out, and we are looking for the quickest and most efficient way to help these children. RISSE has given them a desperately needed community to keep them healthy and safe and engaged as they make a tough transition to their new lives.
Ali – his name is Amjad Abdullah Mohammed – is a very good person, one of those better angels that reminds us what it can mean to be human, he understands empathy and love and encouragement. He is changing lives for the better every day.
I am proud to have him as a friend. Thanks to those of you who wrote him letters of support and good wishes, he was shocked to get messages from Iowa and California and other places.
He said the blog came from heaven. Not exactly, I told him. (You can donate to RISSE here.)