BEIRUT: On the cozy terrace near the AUB Medical Center is the newest addition to the complex, the Joud Boutique. That’s right, Joud – not Jude. Even though the new gift shop is the brainchild of St. Jude Children’s Cancer Center, it was spelled differently because of the Arabic joud, which means giving generously.
The Joud Boutique, which took a year of planning and organizing to set up, aims to raise more funds for the Children’s Cancer Center.
Speaking to The Daily Star, the general manager of St. Jude Children’s Cancer Center, Hana Chaar-Choueib, said, “The store’s main aim was to reach every category of society in order to raise a yearly budget of $12 million, where all the proceeds go to the sick children,” clearly living up to its name.
“The store sells a variety of different products. We sell everything like pillows, mugs, stationery, towels, bags and much more,” Chaar-Choueib added.
In tandem with the idea of giving back, the opening of the Joud Boutique gives buyers the chance to help children with cancer in a different way. Instead of simply donating money, customers get something in return, namely a tangible token in return for their endowment to the center.
“It’s such a great idea. People who like to help but don’t really know how now have an outlet with this store. You can buy in big quantities or you can buy a few things; either way, you’re helping out, that’s why this store is so important,” customer Doha Sarieddine said.
A steady flow of customers during Thursday’s inauguration gave organizers the feeling that opening day was a clear success.
The terrace setting, just across from the AUB Medical Center, offers Joud the chance to be a colorful addition to its more famous neighbor.
On their break, several hospital nurses noticed the crowd gathering outside for the opening. Slightly perturbed by the commotion at first, all three agreed that the new facility’s objective was a very worthy one, and would help cheer up their own workplace.