The DIYA believes every and every child is precious and deserves love, encouragement and support, which the center provides in a multitude of ways.
Instability at home – or not having a home at all – creates tremendous challenges for children. This heartbreak is a shared sorrow for the Gulf, which is one reason Kutayba and his family established the Dar Ilham wa Yusuf Alghanim Child Center (DIYA) in Lebanon. The center, founded in 2003, has no political or religious affiliations; it is a non-profit organization.
Kutayba’s goal, simply stated, is to provide a peaceful, loving environment for children who are orphaned or lack shelter. There is no gender, ethnic, or religious discrimination at DIYA – only a nurturing environment where education, creative expression and personal growth are essential parts of daily life.
It is a home in every sense.
The center resides on a family estate that once belonged to Kutayba’s father, Yusuf. The estate, upon donation, was divided into spacious apartments, allowing boys and girls in need to live together as families. The landscaped grounds of the center have a swimming pool, basketball court, ping pong table, music room and rec center, so there’s also plenty of space for kids to just play and have fun.
Staff members at the DIYA serve not just as caretakers, but also as parents. Each small family (no more than nine children aged 3 – 12) has a “mother” who provides daily support and encouragement. DIYA’s director serves as head of household, and in this capacity is responsible for overseeing each family. The director is also responsible for ensuring that each child has abundant opportunity to learn, grow and succeed.
As with real-life families, each family at the DIYA is unique, and takes shape independently according to the dynamics of that particular grouping. As a