This weekend we will welcome a young refugee and her elderly parents from the Democratic Republic of Congo. They fled the DRC because it was too dangerous a place to live after long years of war. This July, they arrived in Arizona after spending two decades in a refugee camp in Tanzania. Over the years they have had to leave many family members behind. The young woman must first find work to support herself and her parents, but hopes she can also find ways to receive an education along the way.
Arriving in Arizona this June, our next family is also originally from the Democratic Republic of Congo. Now a family of seven, the parents met and married in a refugee camp in Tanzania after fleeing the violence in their country. They ultimately moved to a second Tanzanian refugee camp – overall, they spent over 20 years in the camps. While in one camp, the father worked with the IRC as a teacher. Their children now range in age from 4 to 15, two boys and three girls, and a baby is expected in December. All but the 4-year old are enrolled in school.
We will also welcome an Afghan mother and her four children. After escaping the war and dangers of Afghanistan, they spent seven years in Turkey. The conditions in Turkey were very bad, and among other problems, the children could not go to school. Resettled in Arizona in late July, two of her daughters and a son, ages 11 to 16, are enrolled in school and her eldest daughter is looking for a job. They are happy to have some Afgan relatives being resettled nearby.