Karna Gurung

Midwest Regional Representative – Board of Directors Delegate – Nebraska Country of origin: Bhutan Arrival in the U.S.: 2009 Mr. Karna Gurung is a refugee from Bhutan who was resettled to the United States in 2009. His family fled Bhutan after the government seized their home and farmland, and tortured his father. He spent nearly 20 years living in a […]

Jihan Daman

State: Michigan Country of origin: Iraq Arrival in the U.S.: 1985 Jihan Daman is the Refugee Congress Delegate for Michigan. She is a resettled refugee who came to the United States from Iraq with her family in 1985. Today, she is founder and president of two social services agencies in Michigan: St. Rita Family Services Inc. and St. Rita Hands […]

Jagat Acharya

State: Missouri City of Residence: St. Louis, Missouri Country of origin: Bhutan Arrival in the U.S.: 2010 Mr. Jagat Acharya is a recently-resettled refugee who was forced to flee Bhutan when his family was targeted by the Bhutanese police. Mr. Acharya came to the United States in 2010 and currently lives in St. Louis, Missouri, where he is a program […]

George Tarr

Delegate – New York Country of origin: Liberia Arrival in the U.S.: 1999 George Tarr is the Refugee Congress Delegate from New York. He and his family were forced to flee Liberia in 1998 during the brutal civil war. They were at risk of being targeted because of his grandfather’s work as a government official. In 1999, he was resettled […]

Farjam Behnam

State: Virginia Country of origin: Iran Arrival in the U.S.: 2008 Farjam Behnam is the Refugee Congress Delegate from Virginia. He was granted asylum in the United States after fleeing Iran in 2008. In Iran, Behnam was a researcher and editor of the books IranAlmanac and Iran Who’s Who. He also managed a news website and wrote political bulletins that […]

Ekhlas Ismail Ahmed

State: Maine City of Residence: Portland, Maine Country of origin: Sudan Arrival in the U.S.: 2005 Ms. Ekhlas Ahmed was forced to flee the outbreak of civil war in Sudan with her mother, father, and three younger brothers in 2003. Her family was resettled to Portland, Maine, where she earned her Bachelor’s Degree in International Relations and Sociology from the […]

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 […]

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 […]

Biar Atem

State: Nevada Country of origin: South Sudan Arrival in the U.S.: 2001 Biar Atem is the Refugee Congress Delegate for Nevada. He was born in South Sudan and was forced to abandon his family and village when civil war threatened his life. War in South Sudan severed a generation of Lost Boys from their birthplace and their families. At age seven, […]

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 […]

Clara Hart

State: South Dakota Country of origin: Mozambique Arrival in the U.S.: 1988 Clara Hart fled Mozambique in the 1960s in fear of political persecution. She was resettled to the United States in 1988 and now lives in South Dakota. Hart completed her degree in political science shortly after arrival, and she has taught cultural competency to nursing students for ten […]

The only national refugee-led advocacy organization in the U.S. helps refugees build a new life

By Kimberly Curtis, Deseret News – Salt Lake City, Utah For Sahar Aldurobi, the biggest struggle was getting the chance to start over. Following the U.S. invasion of Iraq, she worked as an English translator for the Iraqi Ministry of Defense while her husband helped rebuild the country’s infrastructure with an American company. One day in 2006, the family received an envelope […]

Recentering Refugees’ Contributions to PA in World Refugee Day Festivities

Arriving on the heels of his discussion with the Governor Tom Wolf of PA who came out in support of refugee resettlement, Joseph, upon invitation from the Philadelphia Mayor’s Commission on Immigrant and Refugees, participated in the annual Refugee Day Festivity in PA. In an event of over 300 people, Joseph printed and distributed flyers to over 100 participants. Joseph […]