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Family Bios: May 14, 2016

600px-Flag_of_Afghanistan.svgThis family is from Afghanistan and consists of a father, age 45, a mother, age 34, one son, age 10, and two daughters, ages 9 and 4.  They arrived in Arizona in late March, and the two children are currently in school. He is relieved that his family is finally safe and adjusting well to life in Arizona.   The father worked for the American Embassy in security, and he proudly showed us pictures of him with the ambassador.  Because of his affiliation with the Americans, his father was killed by the Taliban, as were some other members of his extended family. He fled with his family to Pakistan and lived there for two years before immigrating to America.   His four siblings have all left Afghanistan, and three of them are currently living in Germany.   He has no support system of family or friends in this country.  He is a graduate of university where he studied literature.  He worked as a financial officer in a government office in Afghanistan, and his wife worked as an elementary school teacher.  He learned English in high school, but describes himself as not fluent in the language. His focus now is to find whatever work he can, and his wife intends to work once her youngest child is in school.

600px-Flag_of_Afghanistan.svgThis family is from Afghanistan and arrived here in mid March.  The husband, age 27, and his wife, age 21, have one child, a son age 10 months.  The husband worked as a translator  from 2007-14  and in security for the American Embassy for a year.  He left Afghanistan because he and his family were threatened.  “I went through a hard time…they are bad guys…I got a lot of phone calls.”  His parents and three siblings still live in Afghanistan, and he said that they are doing okay.  He learned his English in high school; however, his wife does not know English. She is beginning language classes this week through Refugee Focus.  His focus now is to find work, but he is concerned because he does not have any training beyond high school and has limited job skills.  His hope is to further his education  someday, so that he can become an electrician or an electrical engineer.  He does have a limited support system here as some friends  who were translators with him in Afghanistan live nearby and visit the family.

600px-Flag_of_Afghanistan.svgThis male refugee, age 18,  is from Afghanistan, and he fled his country alone at age 14 because the village where he lived was attacked by the Taliban.  His family feared that he would be either killed or abducted into the Taliban army.  His father had died earlier, and he had taken over running his grocery store to support his family which consisted of his mother and sister.  He came to Arizona in late February. He lives alone here, but his caseworker has introduced  him to other refugees from his country so he is building a support system for himself.  He is currently taking English classes and is hopeful that he will find a job soon.  He has applied to Job Corps and to other positions.  His goals are to bring his mother and sister here someday and to attend college.  He said that he is “happy” and “comfortable” living in Arizona and optimistic about the future.

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