Tag blog

The Sense of Belonging

When Ann appeared for her citizenship interview and exam before U.S. Immigration in early September, she knew she had to get it right. She was from the Bahamas and five days before taking her exams, Hurricane Dorian flattened the house where she had lived, leaving friends and family members dead or missing. “I had nothing […]

Reunited After 8 Years…

          Nan Mon arrived in the United States as a Burmese refugee in 2011. At the time, she was a young, single mother of a four-year-old son and had spent most of her life in a refugee camp in Thailand. When she and her child were approved to resettle in the […]

Father to see his child for the first time

          In 1996, Mutoni along with her parents and siblings fled the Democratic Republic of Congo. They settled in a refugee camp in Rwanda. Despite the harsh circumstances within the camp, Mutoni met and married a Congolese man named Innocent. Together they had their first child.           […]

“See everything you’ve accomplished!”

When Jelena Milisav meets newly-arrived refugees with young children, her heart goes out to them. “I can’t feel their struggle, but I know my mom felt that.” Just over 20 years ago, Jelena and her family came to Greensboro as Bosnian refugees fleeing the wars that followed the break-up of the former Yugoslavia. At the […]

“Have some food!”

Recently, I found myself enjoying the hospitality of my co-workers. It was the Friday in between Christmas and New Years’, and the CWS office was quiet. I had eaten an early lunch, and by early afternoon, Doha and Ghaisha finally realized they were hungry too. They stepped downstairs to buy a couple of meals for […]

“Don’t let them feel that they are strangers…”

On September 27, Yahya, Almaz, and their 8-year-old son stepped off a plane in Greensboro, North Carolina. For them, arriving in the United States was nothing short of a miracle. “Really, God saved us.” Yahya and Almaz were born in Ethiopia when the Derg, a communist regime, was still in power. Yahya’s family were farmers […]

“I was there…”

Ajuwa and Imani were born in Bukavu, the capital of the South Kivu province, in what is now the Democratic Republic of Congo. Growing up, they had a happy life in the city: Ajuwa with his parents and four siblings and Imani with her parents and six siblings. “We were living good in Bukavu. There […]

The Most Important Day

In May 2012, Ibrahim Salih and Nada Ahmed arrived in Greensboro as refugees from Sudan. They got on a plane to the United States after three and a half years of living as asylees in Egypt. “We didn’t even know English, not even a little English. Zero, zero, zero.” English proved to be only one […]

Sowing Seeds of Peace and Justice

Mentzie Abdul-Rahman has always known that she wanted to practice social work. Both of her parents were community activists in Charlotte, and her father was an Imam who started the first Islamic Center there. When she was nine years old, her father organized an interfaith rally in Charlotte to advocate for human rights and social justice […]

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