Krystal Sirman

Krystal Sirman (Survivor Corps in Jordan): Krystal is from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where she graduated from Louisiana State University in 2004 with a Bachelor’s degree in psychology and a minor in sociology. During her undergraduate student, Krystal served as director of Africa Initiative, a student organization, and led 12 university students to Ghana for three months during the summer of 2004 to volunteer. The same year, she participated in the Africa Initiative’s Ghana program for three weeks as a volunteer. Krystal received her Master’s degree in international development from The George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs in May 2008. As part of her studies, she travelled to Bangladesh for three weeks to conduct research for her Master’s Capstone Project. After her fellowship, Krystal wrote: "The best part of my fellowship was visiting the few survivors I had the opportunity to visit, as well as spending time with the youth during the summer camp. Every person I met was so positive and confident, and definitely taught me to appreciate what I have and who I am."

Not just another day at the office

19 Jun

A camera crew came into the LSN office yesterday. This was the second camera crew to visit the office since I’ve been here. Needless to say, I was intrigued and just had to know what was going on, so I asked the Executive Director. He told me that this crew was from the Jordanian Government’s Public Security Directorate (PSD), which is basically the police department and is responsible for the country’s internal security. While I don’t know all the details, I was able to gather that the PSD has these television programs, probably similar to an extended public service announcement, which are designed to inform citizens of public security issues and motivate them to refrain from participating in deviant and dangerous behavior.

The PSD had come to the office yesterday to film a scene for one of these television programs. This particular show was focusing on a very prevalent problem in Jordan: aerial gunfire, or shooting guns in the air as a form of celebration (for more information and to read related news articles, please visit In an effort to inform the public about the dangers of this act and the tragic effects it can have on individuals and families, the PSD was filming people who have been personally affected by falling bullets.

At LSN, that person is R, the receptionist. While I do not know her story, I do know that she lost her left arm just below the shoulder due to a wound from a shotgun that was shot in celebration of some event. R is a beautiful, funny, and cheerful young woman, who every day straps on a passive prosthetic arm, which has no movement or functional capacity. What struck me the most while watching R performing her lines was that even this woman, who is surrounded by caring and supportive family, friends, and coworkers and embodies strength and courage daily, is still so easily vulnerable to the pain and heartache that accompany such an injury. This became apparent when she began crying in the middle of her scene – and it wasn’t simply an overly-dramatic performance as upon completing the scene she left the room and returned a few minutes later with red eyes. But with the support of the LSN staff, R was back to her jovial self in no time. That, to me, is what LSN is all about – encouragement, friendship, dependability, and respect. And I like that.

Posted By Krystal Sirman

Posted Jun 19th, 2008

1 Comment

  • Brent Maxwell

    June 20, 2008


    Great post! I was wondering what the crew was there for. It’s amazing to hear the stories of the staff members at LSN, and to hear how LSN was able to help them “Get jobs, get legs, and get on with their lives…”

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