The nine-year-old girl who died in hospital shortly after being struck by a bus in an Abbotsford intersection Friday morning has been identified as Hala Albarhoum, a recently resettled refugee from Syria.
Adnan Bhat, a Richmond resident involved with the Abbotsford Islamic Centre, has started a GoFundMe page to help support Hala’s four family members.
“A family of five escape the fangs of suffering and death in war torn Syria,” Bhat wrote. “They lost loved ones, their wealth, their land, their honour – yet they were hopeful for a better life. They had each other by their side and that was their strength. They were hopeful that one day they find a home together, where the parents can see their kids grow young, and the kids see their parents grow old – in safety.”
Bhat said that dream came true for the Albarhoums when they arrived in Abbotsford over a year ago, as government-sponsored refugees.
“However, their joy and happiness were struck by a huge tragedy,” he said.
The GoFundMe, which had raised more than $5,000 by Saturday evening, will help support Hala’s parents and two surviving siblings, Bhat said.