We will meet a family of four from Pakistan who arrived in March. The mother is busy with her two sons, ages 8 and 5, and the father is busy with his job. Like so many others, political persecution forced them to flee their country. Before finally reaching the United States and Arizona, they spent years in Sri Lanka, where they were not permitted to work. They are glad to be here and feel fortunate in being able to join family members who were previously settled in Phoenix.
A Burmese family of three will be on our route today. Coming to the United States allowed them to escape the Burmese persecution of the Rohinga people. Their lively little girl is three and seems happy in her new home. They reached Phoenix in March and have family in the area who have been helpful in getting them settled into their new life.
Our other family comes from the Democratic Republic of Congo. This family of 9 also arrived in Arizona in March after spending 5 years in a refugee camp in Uganda. Sadly, their father died during their years in the camp. The children, 4 girls and 4 boys, range in age from 8 to 22. The older ones are hoping to find jobs and continue their schooling. The younger ones started school last spring. Their elementary school is within walking distance; the middle children ride a bus to their school. Some of the members of the family were able to learn English while in the Uganda camp.