The moment that Toronto couple Samantha Jackson and Farzin Yousefian saw the photo of the drowned refugee child Alan Kurdi in September, they knew they had to do something to help the Syrian people in their escape from terrorism.

The couple were set to be married in March and had everything important planned and booked when they decided to cancel their wedding in order to use the funds for a greater good. The couple opted to be married at Toronto City Hall and have a small dinner with their closest family and friends instead.

“We realized right away that our wedding would be a great opportunity to come together with our friends and family to support this cause, and transformed our wedding into a fundraiser with the hopes of helping a Syrian family start a new life in Toronto,” Jackson said.

Jackson had been working with Ryerson University Lifeline Syria Challenge since June. According to the Huffington Post, “the organization connects displaced Syrian families with private sponsors in Canada, who can help them with tasks such as finding an apartment or schools for their children.”

The couple encouraged their families and friends to donate to the organization and so far have raised $17,500 of their $27,000 goal. According to the Ryerson University website, $27,000 is the amount needed in order to fully sponsor a family of four.

Sydney Robinson is a political writer for the Ring of Fire Network. She has also appeared in political news videos for Ring of Fire. Sydney has a degree in English Literature from the University of West Florida, and has an active interest in politics, social justice, and environmental issues. She would love to hear from you on Twitter @SydneyMkay or via email at