A Dream Deferred
Karim Abouelnaga's Story
Growing up too soon
Adel and Mahassen, Karmin's parents, came to the U.S from Egypt.
They were looking (like everyone else), for a better life.
Adel was a dreamer, "an entrepreneur to his core". But who has time to dream when you have a family to provide for. For a living, Adel sold souvenirs at street fairs, but eventually he opened his own shop in midtown Manhattan.
"The couple was living their American dream: a successful business, five boys ranging from ages 16 to 1, and a comfortable apartment they owned in Queens, N.Y.
Time went on and life was great... until Adel was diagnosed with lymphoma; he pasted-away nine months later.
Mahassen, the mother, couldnt keep the business and raise her five boys on her own. They eventually had to sell their business and inventory to pay for the funeral.
With no money and a way to provide, the family had to sell their home and move into a small two bedroom apartment.
The primary source on income was the older brother, and Mahassen worked part-time in a public school.
"We were Forced to grow up sooner that most kids... but we're going to make it" -Karim
Today, Karim is CEO and co-founder "Practice Makes Perfect". Which helps students with school and summer activities. It can also help in their future career.
Lessons from others
>Adel: Dreams may be "side tracked" for awhile but that does mean you need to give up on you dreams.
>Karmin: it doesn't matter where you come form or your financial situation, you can still aim to do your best and be a leader.