To see Rouba Yamine – a confident, articulate, and talented young woman – today, it is hard to imagine that she once struggled with low self-esteem as a result of bullying and mental health problems.
From Lebanon, she grew up in a Christian family and loved to watch SAT-7 KIDS as a child, dreaming of one day appearing on the channel. Rouba, now 20, remembers how the programs presented stories from the Bible in creative ways, which helped her to understand and remember them.
In her teens, Rouba struggled with depression and anxiety and was bullied by her classmates. “They used to make fun of me at school, thinking I was mentally ill or crazy,” she said. “I no longer trusted myself, and I gained weight. This also didn’t help.”
But life started to turn around for Rouba when she saw a commercial on SAT-7 KIDS for auditions to take part in the quiz show Challenge Accepted. At 18 years old, she went along to the casting, and the SAT‑7 team immediately saw her potential.
Rouba, who has a beautiful singing voice, went on to appear as a contestant on Challenge Accepted, performing a worship song on the program. She said, “With time, and when I came to SAT-7 KIDS, I realized that there are people like me who were bullied once, and they supported me a lot… Through SAT-7 KIDS, Jesus made my dream come true.”
The producer and director could see that Rouba was a natural talent and said she could go on to become a presenter. But this seemed like a huge step for Rouba in her battle with low self-esteem.
Reflecting on how this made her feel at the time, she said, “I thought, ‘I wish I could see what they are seeing in me. I wish I could have more self-confidence.’”
Rouba was selected as a presenter for a new children’s program, Behind the Door. Now in its second season, the show helps young viewers learn about Jesus through games, puzzles, and other entertaining segments. The program also gives space for young viewers to share their own stories.
“The children who watch share with us the life challenges they have,” Rouba said. “We also share with them our hardships and experiences, hoping to help them.”
Rouba’s mental health problems continue to impact her, though her symptoms have eased, and she thanks God for His care and provision. She had this message for young SAT-7 viewers: “They should not lose hope. God has a different timing to ours, and we should trust Him and be patient no matter what is happening to us.”