Maryland: Beni DeDieu Luzau

Maryland: Beni DeDieu Luzau

State: Maryland

City of Residence: Silver Spring, Maryland

Country of origin: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Arrival in the U.S.: 2008

Mr. Beni DeDieu Luzau fled the Democratic Republic of the Congo in 2004 to avoid imprisonment for his advocacy work on LGBTI issues and HIV/AIDS awareness. In the U.S. he continues his work for social justice as a member of the National LGBTQ Task Force and founder of the Refugee Alliance Network (RAN). He also works as a correspondent for a Belgian Magazine called Telsquels, and serves as a …

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Michigan: Ayman Okar

Michigan: Ayman Okar

State: Michigan

City of Residence: Grosse Pointe Woods, Michigan

Country of origin: Syria

Arrival in the U.S.: 2012

Mr. Ayman Okar is originally from Syria, and came to the United States in 2012 on a visa. Mr. Okar currently lives in Michigan with his wife and twin sons where he works in sales support at Cosmopolitan Travel Service. He serves as a member of the Rotary Club International West Bloomfield, and participates in community gatherings at Muslim Unity Centers and local mosques. He is most proud of contributing to …

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Nevada: Biar Atem

Nevada: Biar Atem

State: Nevada

City of Residence: Las Vegas, Nevada

Country of origin: South Sudan

Arrival in the U.S.: 2001

In 1987, when Mr. Atem was seven years old, civil war drove him and another estimated 20,000 boys from their families and villages in southern Sudan. This group of children who fled to escape death and induction into the northern Sudanese army would come to be known as the Lost Boys of Sudan. After fleeing his country, Mr. Atem spent 13 years in refugee camps in Ethiopia and Kenya before he …

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Idaho: Fidel Nshombo

Idaho: Fidel Nshombo

State: Idaho

City of Residence: Boise, Idaho

Country of origin: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Arrival in the U.S.: 2006

Originally from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Mr. Fidel Nshombo was resettled to the United States in 2006 and currently resides in Boise, Idaho with his wife and four daughters. Mr. Nshombo fled violence in his home country when he was just twelve years old. Although he experienced great trauma throughout his childhood, he writes and shares his story to help overcome his past experiences. He has authored …

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South Dakota: Clara Hart

South Dakota: Clara Hart

State: South Dakota

City of Residence: Sioux Falls, South Dakota

Country of origin: Mozambique

Arrival in the US: 1988

Ms. Clara Hart fled Mozambique in the 1960s in fear of political persecution. She was resettled to the United States in 1988 and currently lives in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. She completed her degree in political science shortly after her arrival, and she has taught cultural competency to nursing students for the past ten years. Ms. Hart also participates in many civic and volunteer organizations, and co-founded the Refugee Women’s …

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Florida

 

Daimy Bueno

Location: Miami, Florida
Origin: Cuba
Arrival to US: 2004

Daimy fled Cuba in fear of political persecution. Upon coming to the United States, she started a nonprofit organization and published a book called Welcome to assist new refugees. She works as a paralegal and is pursuing a law degree, volunteering for UNICEF in her spare time. A contribution to the community that she is most proud of is having published her book to help immigrants.

Q: What word(s) best describes being in the US for you?
A: Challenge.

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California

Carmen Kcomt

Location: Santee, California
Origin: Peru
Arrival to US: 2003

Carmen was forced to flee Peru in fear of retaliation for decisions made while serving as Superior Magistrate. She currently lives in San Diego with her husband and three sons, working as Director of the Legal and Social Department in a Community Health Center. She has a wide range of experience providing legal services to others in need and serves on various task forces including Asylum Seekers, Human Trafficking San Diego, Women 4 Empowerment, and Refugee Forum. Her …

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Maryland

Beni DeDieu Luzau

Location: Hyattsville, Maryland
Origin: Democratic Republic of the Congo
Arrival to US: 2008

Luzau fled the DRC to avoid imprisonment for his advocacy work on LGBTI issues and HIV/AIDS. In the U.S. he continues his work for social justice, which includes being a member of the National LGBTQ Task Force, and being the founder and president of Refugee Alliance Network (RAN). He also works as a correspondent for Telsquels (Belgian Magazine) and as a translator and interpreter for Christ Companions Church. Luzau’s most proud contribution is …

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Michigan

Ayman Okar

Location: Grosse Pointe Woods, Michigan
Origin: Syria
Arrival to US: 2012

Ayman lives in Michigan with his wife and twin sons, working as a Sales Support at Cosmopolitan Travel Service. He serves as a member of Rotary Club International West Bloomfield and participates in community gatherings at Muslim Unity Centers and local mosques. His most proud contribution is being an active member of Refugee Congress since 2013.

Q: What word(s) best describes being in the US for you?
A: Hope.

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Nevada

Biar Atem

Location: Las Vegas, Nevada
Origin: South Sudan
Arrival to US: 2001

Since resettlement, Biar has received a Bachelor of Science in Accounting and a Master’s in Business Administration. He has founded the South Sudan Center of America and is an Advisory Board Member for ECDC African Community Center Las Vegas. His most proud contribution is inspiring youth to stay out of trouble, finish school and become role models in the community; and setting up new refugees on the path to success by sharing his experience with them.

Q: …

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Idaho

Fidel Nshombo

Location: Boise, Idaho
Origin: Democratic Republic of the Congo
Arrival to US: 2006

Fidel fled violence in his home country and now lives with his wife and four daughters. He has since authored two books of poetry and released two video documentaries to spread awareness of refugees in the U.S. The contribution he is most proud of is preparing elementary schools before they admit refugee students, and continuing to educate them after they have merged. Fidel has been awarded for his human rights work by the Mayor …

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South Dakota

Clara Hart

Location: Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Origin: Mozambique
Arrival to US: 1988

Clara fled Mozambique in fear of political persecution. Since then she has completed a degree in political science, co-founded the Refugee Women’s Association of Sioux Falls and now teaches cultural competency to nursing students. Her most proud contribution is her ongoing activism against anti-refugee bills introduced in the legislature.

Q: What word(s) best describes being in the US for you?
A: RIGHT TO VOTE!

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