We will visit a family, originally from Syria. Mom and dad have 2 sons. The family fled to Jordan in 2011 after their older son was shot. Thankfully, he has mostly recovered. In Syria, the dad was an entrepreneur, doing many varied jobs. Mom stayed home with her boys. The family arrived here in June 2016. Both boys are in school and speak English well. They have friends – even some who are originally from Syria – and are helpful to their families with translation. The mom said she is so happy to be in the USA. She exclaimed it is such a wonderful place and she is seeing things she never even imagined. She is happy to be here and safe with her family.
Another visit will be with a family from Burma (Myanmar) and Indonesia. The father is Rohingya. He escaped persecution in his country when he was only 15. He fled to Thailand and, 3 years later, continued on to Malaysia. There he met his wife, and Indonesian national. Both their daughters were born in Malaysia. They are expecting a baby in May. The family has been here since September 2015. Dad has been working all along while mom takes care of the girls. The family is excited to be moving soon. They will be heading to upstate New York to join friends from back home. They are grateful that The Welcome to America Project will be coming to wish them well and bring some items for their new baby and for the girls for their cross-country move.
We will also visit another family from Burma (Myanmar). Mom and dad have 3 children (12,11, 5). Mom did not want to talk much about her experience, but she did share that she was forced to leave her home as a little girl and was in a refugee camp for most of her life. The family is fortunate to have 2 sets of relatives right here in Phoenix. They are able to help each other out with babysitting and other family needs. Their older children are enjoying school and mom sad she is very grateful for things WTAP will bring, especially for her children.