Refugees

Filming of This is My Home Now.
Siera Schubach-Mariah, Dunn Kramer, Dean MacLeod

Some of the first Montagnard immigrants, people from a mountain region of Southeast Asia, to came to North Carolina in 1986 and 1987. They were granted refugee status in recognition of their support to the U.S. Special Forces during the Vietnam War. But since then, the newest immigrants have made their way to America because they were fleeing religious and political prosecution. TheMontagnard families live in two worlds: one that is still close to the traditions and ways of their homeland and the other in modern American society.

Picture of gavel
Flickr.com

Tens of thousands of unaccompanied child immigrants have turned themselves in at the U.S. Border this year.

Once they’ve been arrested, the federal Office of Refugee Resettlement looks for places to put these kids until their day in immigration court.

The O.R.R. reports 1,648 children were placed in North Carolina between January and August.

Burning Coal Theatre

While Anne Frank’s story is familiar to many, the production currently on stage at Raleigh’s Burning Coal Theatre is a bit different. 

Burmese Crops Sprout In Orange County

Oct 29, 2013
Farmer at Transplanting Traditions in Orange County
Emma Miller

Some refugees in Chapel Hill are finding a way to reconnect with their native farming tradition.

The Karen are a displaced ethnic minority from the Southeast Asian nation of Burma (also known as Myanmar). More than a thousand have ended up in Orange County through resettlement programs, which place them in areas like Chapel Hill with free transportation, good schools and available work as housekeepers.

With the help of a community farming project, Karen people in Chapel Hill are once again growing Burmese crops and making money along the way.

Akib Khan was a reporter with WUNC's Youth Radio Institute this summer.
WUNC

This summer WUNC has been working with six youth reporters as part of the Summer Youth Radio Institute in our American Graduate Project.  Akib Khan moved with his family to the U.S. from Dhaka, Bangladesh when he was nine years old. He reports on the Burmese refugee community in Carrboro.

Abdul Hussain and his family came to Carrboro in July. Hussain grew up in Burma. He says when he was 13, the local government made false allegations against him, forcing him to flee his homeland and that this happens to many minorities in Burma. He lived in Malaysia for years before finally being granted asylum in the United States. When he arrived, the first thing he did was look for something familiar—as a Muslim, he wanted to find a mosque.

Some of the farmers at Transplanting Traditions.
Transplanting Traditions Community Farm

On 4 acres just outside Chapel Hill, nearly 150 Karen refugees till the soil as they did back home in Myanmar, also known as Burma.

Transplanting Traditions Community Farm is educating locals about Burmese vegetables and cuisine, and teaching the refugees about American produce, with the eventual goal of setting them up as full-time farmers.

Ndabarushimana Christopher is a musician and refugee from Burundi who now calls Greensboro his home.
Ndabarushimana Christopher

Now in its fourth year, the Mosaic Festival celebrates the diversity and cultures of the Triad, attracting thousands of attendees. Host Frank Stasio talks with Sarah Ivory, director of the Immigration and Refugee Program of Church World Service of Greensboro, which organizes the festival. Plus, the band Wareware featuring Ndabarushimana Christopher, a Greensboro musician and refugee from Burundi, performs live at Triad Stage.

Darlene Nicgorski
hrcr.org

Darlene Nicgorski was a nun when she was convicted of conspiracy and faced a 25-year prison term in the 1980s for her work helping Central American refugees. She didn’t end up having to serve that term, but her work in the so-called Sanctuary Movement made her the poster child of immigrant activism in the 1980s.

Abu, from Africa, smiles in the ''Giving Closet'' at the Newcomers School in Greensboro
Jeff Tiberii

The Doris Henderson Newcomers School in Greensboro is a melting pot. Since August of 2007 the school has welcomed about 3,000 students from around the world who are transitioning to a life in America while learning English. Seventy-five percent of the students are refugees and the challenges facing them are numerous.