News from Baltimore, MD
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On a sunny Saturday in June, high school teens from Bhutan, Myanmar, and Congo sat chatting with their American peers on the lawn outside of Stony Run Friends Meetinghouse in Baltimore. Later, there was Frisbee, basketball, guitars, and Nepali songs. Through the activities, connections began to form across cultures. Those connections between kids uprooted from around the world and American students at a private college preparatory school were the goal of the day, the beginning of something.
Half a Life
Fifteen years ago, Olga was confronted with two options. The first was to stay with her two sons in El Salvador, but no be able to provide them with basic necessities, much less the bright future she dreamed of for them. The second was to leave her three year old and one year old to cross the border into the United States, and provide a dignified life for them from afar. As agonizing as the decision was, Olga knew it was best for her to leave her two sons and earn a living in America without them.
IRC in Baltimore Remembers Volunteer and Donor
When I first met Seska Ramberg in the summer of 2009, that she was special was immediately obvious. Even after only a brief introduction, her glow and positivity – born not out of naiveté but something ineffably deep – shone through. When I finally got a chance to talk to her, we very quickly determined a common connection: the unheralded Indonesian city of Solo, a center of Islamic study and Javanese court rituals. I had visited the city on a couple occasions. Seska had spent more than a year in Solo studying Javanese dance in the 1970s.
VIDEO: A Refugee Mother’s Dream Comes True
A refugee mother finally reunited with her son after a decade apart. This is their story.
Group Helps Refugee High School Girls Adjust to the US
The girls bathe in the sun as they snack on the assorted goodies spread out on the blanket before them: brownies and apple slices, sushi and Chinese rice sweets. The noises of the chirping birds mingle with the soft Korean pop melodies coming from the Bluetooth speakers. While many of them did not know each other a few months ago other than running into each other in the hallway, perhaps exchanging words in a common language, they have clearly become much closer by the end of the 10-week program.
Ali's Story: One of the First Syrian Families Arrives in Baltimore
Like many of the people the IRC serves, Ali never expected to one day find himself and his family in Baltimore. He never expected to enroll his daughters in an American public school, never expected to be learning English.
Back on the Mountain
I look up at the mountain as the kids come down; there’s Ting Ting, laughing as she shreds to a stop, and Sung, wobbling slightly but grinning nonetheless. Daniel coolly coasts up next to me, with a subtle smile of confidence spreading across his face. It has been six weeks and tonight is the last evening of the CHILL snowboarding program.
New IRC Program Helps Political Asylee Buy a Home
When Jules came to Baltimore County from his country in West Africa, he was afraid of the big city next door. Now, thanks to an IRC program, he is a homeowner in that very city. “It’s very mixed, you can see all kinds of people”, Jules says of Baltimore City.
A Mother and Son Are Reunited After Nine Years
One cold night in January, Tha Thang stood waiting nervously in BWI/Thurgood Marshall Airport. It was a night she had hoped would come for nearly a decade. The former refugee from Burma was bundled against the cold and clutched a bouquet of white roses. The waiting under the bright lights of the baggage area was agonizing. Finally, a thin, smiling face appeared from down the hall. It was her fifteen-year-old son she had not seen in more than nine years.
Goodbye to Two Accomplished Staff Members
The International Rescue Committee in Baltimore is fortunate enough to attract staff members both well qualified and dedicated to our mission of helping the displaced from around the world start new lives in Baltimore. This month we are sad to be losing two such staff members, Karine Nankam and Mary Hathaway, who have devoted their energies to ensuring refugees lead healthy, rewarding lives for years to come.