Imagine the culture shock, one day you are barely existing, much of your extended family murdered, and you are literally starving in a grass hut in Darfur, that you then have to flee in your bare feet, after militia members set the hut on fire. Then you become seperated from your husband, eventually ending up with your infant child in a refugee camp in Chad. There a friendly man gives you a phone number, and tells you, “If you get to America, call my cousin and he will help you in the Indiana.”
You and your child make it to the United States where you are admitted with a student visa, you call that phone number and subsequently find yourself in your own apartment, with running hot and cold water, electricity, heat in the winter, air conditioning in the summer, and a job making utensils and cups in a plastics factory. You have a real chance of making a life for yourself and your child, through the kindness and kinship of other displaced Darfurians in the Ft. Wayne area, and through the kindness, decency and open hearts of American citizens, who’s ancestors preceeded you.
But you will never lose those images of your family members, and your neighbors who were not as fortunate to escape the genocide.