“From 1001 Nights, I learned the meaning of trust among friends. I have always thought that it was impossible to trust anyone, but these stories have shown me that friends are here to make our lives easier and that we can have faith and trust in them”, says Mayara Hussien Al Ali, a 12 years old Syrian student at Al Sama Association in Chatila Camp – Beirut. Mayara is enrolled in the 1001 Nights program which is implemented by the INITIATE, and produced by BIG BAD BOO studios. The 1001 Nights program utilizes cartoons to increase positive civic values, decrease negative civic values, and enhance social cohesion.

“It’s a funny story”, says Mayara, “once I lost my pen, and without hesitating, I accused my classmate who was sitting next to me. She told me that she did not take my pen, and that I had lost it or left it at home, and that she would never steal anything from anyone. Of course, at first, I did not believe her. So later at night, while I was checking my bag I saw my pen, and I felt really guilty about what I did and how I treated my classmate. So, the next morning, I apologized and asked for her forgiveness and promised her that I would never miss judge people again, and thankfully she accepted my apology and now we are more than sisters”.

The 1001 Nights program is funded by the European Regional Development and Protection Programme (RDPP II) for Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq, which is supported by the Czech Republic, Denmark, the European Union, Ireland and Switzerland. The project is implemented in Lebanon in partnership with 105 safe centers and around 155 public and private schools in Lebanon.

“Thanks to 1001 Nights program, I have learned that no matter what happens around me, I should always think before I act and make sure I do not miss judge people around me”, Maraya concluded.