Mahmoud abu Ali is the brainchild behind Yellow Brick Road and he serves as the full time director and principal. Culturally Muslim, he  grew up in a refugee camp and through the UNRWA school system, which is what  inspired him to start the Yellow Brick Road.

“With the absence of competent teachers or a broad curriculum, my education was inadequate. Conditions at school were harsh. With no heating or fans, we froze in the winter and melted in summer.

When I left school, I earned a degree in Applied English and later a Masters in International Development and Corporation. With a knowledge of English, not only was I equipped to embrace the age of information,  my world opened up. Things were not what I had been taught. There was so much I had not learned. The world is so big, so interesting and so beautiful, but I didn’t learn this in school. That is the reason I love our project. It gives me hope - for me and for my community.

Life is not kind or fair to many people but circumstances are there so we can rise above. Responsibility for making a better life falls at our own feet - and ours alone. Our program is not just about English, it’s about teaching children to think of others in the smallest task. Through washing their dishes, watering a plant, or visiting a sick friend, children can learn not only to love life but also embrace personal, social and environmental responsibility. The ‘blame game’ is destructive. Victimhood is a lie that corrodes. Education is the way to improve our lives.”

YBR students listen attentively to their head teacher.