The Story of Jakoub
The Algerian man you see here is smiling, bright, and full of love. Like many of us, right? But when you hear what this man has been through, you’d be amazed he can smile at all.
In Algeria, 2015, he was locked away for religious reasons by a group of extremists. They tortured him for 5 days, tearing out all but 4 of his teeth and leaving permanent damage to his brain. He somehow escaped, barely alive, and ended up on a boat to Turkey. His situation there was hardly better, so he risked his life in 6 attempts to cross over to Lesvos, Greece, and saw his friend drown in his own arms.
But why am I telling you all this? Because every negative story has a bright ending. Such is the way of the world. After finally making it over to the island of Lesvos, his situation radically changed. At the refugee camp, he met a spiritual man named Pau who decided to take him under his wing. Pau raised money for a 40’000€ tooth operation conducted by the world’s leading doctors. You can check out the crowdfunding campaign here, if you’re feeling generous. The operation is halfway there, and the future is bright for Jakoub. Pau gives Thai Massage courses at the Sunshine House, so he also chose to bring Jakoub there and give him a taste of eastern spiritual practices. That’s where I met Jakoub. And where is he now? Starting a new life in Germany, with a brand new European passport and a BIG smile! And if you ask him what happened to his teeth, I swear to you he laughs about it.
Lesson learnt: next time you catch yourself complaining, remember how lucky you are to have all those teeth! Jokes aside, remember that some people have real problems, and even they manage to push through with positivity and love. Hats off to you Jakoub, a true inspiration.