The man’s name is Rami Adham, but to people in Syria, he’s known as “The Toy Smuggler.” Since the civil war began in his homeland, Rami has traveled to Syria 28 times in the last 5 years. His contact smuggles him into Syria for the sole purpose of delivering necessities to the people and toys to the children.
Adham says the journey into Syria is not an easy one. The man crosses Syria’s boarders walking miles with bags on his back. Rami is smuggling his way in, so during his trip, bullets are fired at him. The risk is huge, but the joy Adham gets from seeing the happiness in their faces is indescribable.
The 44-year-old was born in Aleppo, but grew up in Helsinki, Finland– where he lives with his wife and six children. In the beginning, he planned to carry supplies and food, but his daughter had another idea.
“She said, ‘I have toys, I can give you some,’” Adham explained.
Adham hauled his cargo in cars, on planes and at times on his own back. He smuggled his supplies across nearly 3,000 miles from Helsinki to a refugee camp in Syria. The toy smuggler says the children were unimpressed by the food and money. But when they saw the toys, “their eyes were big, everybody was smiling,” Adham said.
A lot of us seem to forget that during these civil wars, the children are affected too. This isn’t the first year of war for the kids, it’s the sixth. Adham added, “it seems like everybody forgot them.”
Toys aren’t the only thing Adham brings to the children. He has also funded four schools in Syria’s refugee camps, giving the displaced children an opportunity to learn.
“You know, I’ve given a kid $10 and they don’t really know what to do with it,” Adham said. “But give him a ball or a stuffed toy, he knows a thousand things to do with it. This is their mental therapy.”
The man has a heart two times the size of a normal human. An incredible dedication to his people and the children.