International Rescue Committee (IRC)

Refugees build an American life, part ll

NBC affiliate WVIR-TV in Charlottesville, Virginia, has launched a decade-long project looking at the evolution of three refugee families as they build their American life. The families -- the Bwisezes from Tanzania, the al Malhams from Iraq, and the Bhandaris from Nepal -- were all resettled by the International Rescue Committee.

Getting young refugees enrolled in school and involved in their new communities is a top priority for the IRC.  In part ll of WVIR-TV's series, you'll meet three children from these families as they tackle the English language and build their confidence in Charlottesville classrooms:


Fifth-grader Rabina Bhandari, who says her favorite subject is science, is in class with one other girl who is also from Nepal. "It's good for me because I can speak Nepali to them," Rabina says.


Adnan al Malham is in sixth grade and on a swim team. "I was nervous first because I thought I couldn't swim," Adnan says. "Then they teach me and now I can swim."


Samuel Bwiseze is also adjusting to sixth grade. "We learn English and nobody laughs at each other," Samuel explains. "I feel so happy," he says. "I promise I'm going to teach my mommy."

You can watch the video at and get a preview of all the stories that have aired in the series here.

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