Actor Edward Norton is leading an online fundraiser to collect money for a family of Syrian refugees who are building a new life in America.
The Fight Club star launched the Crowdrise.com campaign on Saturday (12Dec15), after he was moved by a story he read on blog Humans of New York, which features the often moving personal stories of strangers.
On Tuesday (08Dec15), the site featured a Syrian refugee calling himself “The Scientist”, who detailed his devastating story of losing his wife and six other family members two years ago in a missile attack.
But the scientist-engineer, who is battling stomach cancer, recently received word he and his remaining family members are moving to Troy, Michigan in hopes of a better life, and he shares his dreams of making a difference in the world through his work.
U.S. President Barack Obama left a comment on the site welcoming The Scientist and his family to America, while Norton decided to help out the refugee with finances through the fundraiser.
On the Crowdrise website, the actor writes, “This story moved me to tears. This man has suffered profound loss that would crush the spirit of many people and yet he still passionately wants a chance to contribute positively to the world. If we don’t welcome people like this into our communities and empower his dream of making an impact with his life, then we’re not the country we tell ourselves we are.
“Let’s reject the ‘anti-human’ voices that tell us to fear refugees and show this man and his family what Americans are really made of. Let’s show that a country built by the energy and dreams of immigrants still believes in brave people who come here with hope for better life.”
He continues, “Everything we raise here will go to help this family so that the father can get the medical treatment he needs to live and pursue his work, and his family can build a new stable life after their tragedy, and…as the Scientist beautifully expresses…to support his dream of contributing to the world.”
More than $374,000 (£249,333) had been donated to Norton’s campaign as WENN went to press.