ASU student recalls her volunteer work in Syria

One valley woman spent summers in Syria when she was small. Zana Alattar is a Syrian-American, who speaks Arabic. She's a double-major at Arizona State University studying bio-chemistry and justice, she's also studying pre-med.

"Kayla's story is my story gone wrong," said Zana Alattar.

Like Prescott woman Kayla Mueller, ASU Student Zana Alattar has also volunteered in Syria.

"The circumstances that happened to her, they could have happened to anyone when you cross that border," said Alattar.

Alattar is a Syrian-American is President of a club called "Students Organized for Syria," at Arizona State University. She was in Syria during 2013 when she brought food and blankets to families and took school supplies to children.

"You cross from a fairly safe area with structure and city life, and you cross into Syria where as far east as the eye can see there are refugee tents and disheveled buildings, you can hear bombing in the distance, and you know when you cross that border you have taken a risk. But when it comes to humanitarian aid work, you have to take that risk to help the people you help," she said.

Alattar acknowledges now the viral videos of ISIS beheadings and murders are giving volunteers pause. 

"I think a lot of people who have been doing humanitarian work in Syria are a bit more nervous about doing that, so they've kind of restricted to work in Turkey and neighboring countries with the refugees," said Alattar.

She said her parents pleaded with her not to go back, for now she has no plans to.

"I don't think any parent would willingly want their child or son, or daughter to go into a war zone. But for me at the end of the day I have family and friends in Syria living this day in and day out," she said.

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