In the middle of Coffman Union, 25 people froze as confused University of Minnesota students and staff walked by.
University of Minnesota communications student Amina Maameri said she decided to organize the flash-freeze event after being personally compelled to spread awareness of the violence in Syria.
When Maameri showed up at 2:00 p.m. in the initial meeting place outside Coffman Union, she was pleasantly surprised at the number of people that showed up. About 25 students met Maameri to participate in the event in support of Syrian refugees. People stopped by and asked what we were doing, but the most powerful part of the event was the discussion after, she said.
Participants gathered afterward and discussed what took place, how everyone felt while participating in the freeze and the reason everyone did it — Syria.
Maameri said the discussion was moving.
“Syrian people talked about their personal experiences,” she said. “The tone in the room was very powerful.”
During the meeting, Maameri passed around fliers advertising Free Syria hoodies available for purchase through the Syrian American Medical Society. Proceeds from the sale will go to a fund for sending winter essentials to Syrians.
Maameri expressed her desire to organize a fundraiser dinner to continue raising money for the cause. “The goal is to educate people,” she said. “The first step in making a change is raising awareness. We may not have a direct impact, but we can do something.”