Category Archives: when

James Bobbitt’s Story

Editor’s note: Slavery is an integral part of the American story and those who were forced to come to the US in chains, are no less immigrants than any other group. Not only was their freedom taken, but in many cases, their personal family history was lost. On this web site of immigration stories, we pick up their descendants’ story ... Read More »

The Move (Mexico)

There’s a mother named Maria Bravo Nunez, struggling to keep her life as best as she can. Will she make it in the U.S. ? I was living in Jamay, Jalisco, Mexico, in 1980. My life was great as a child. I would play in the mud, and my friends and I would play outside when it rained.            As years ... Read More »

The Great Escape (Viet Nam)

Quy Lee tells a gripping story of his escape by boat from Viet Nam, along with 264 passengers he took along. Also, time in a Malaysian Refugee Camp, followed by a new life in the USA. Quy was part of a storytelling event called “When Home Won’t Let You Stay: Stories of Escape and Refuge.” It was co-sponsored by the ... Read More »

Eritrean Exodus – Ghezae’s Story

Ghezae Kidane tells his story to an audience in Palo Alto. He fled his home country of Eritrea when his stint in the national service looked never-ending. He is part of a mass exodus of young Eritreans who have become frustrated with the arbitrary rules of their “President-for-Life.” They risk their lives to escape. AUnited Nations Commission of Inquiry concluded ... Read More »

“Scrap Materials” (Afghanistan)

Rona Popal shares her story with an audience in Palo Alto, CA – about leaving Afghanistan and beginning from scratch in the US. When the Soviet Army marched into Kabul it meant the end of life as she and her family knew it. Her work with successive waves of Afghan refugees in Fremont, California is sobering and emotional. So too, ... Read More »

Escape From Aleppo (Syria)

Toukhig Arabian tells of her family’s harrowing escape from war-torn Aleppo, Syria, and how they are rebuilding their lives in the US. She was one of five storytellers at a Media Center event in May, 2018, from different countries who had to leave due to violence or repression and build new lives. Read More »

Eyrus (Ethiopia)

It was a light winter rain in Ethiopia. I was very angry when I left home that day because of what happened yesterday. I wish life was not so difficult, that my dad was not so strict. I thought this because my dad said that I was not allowed to hang out with my friends, after I arrived home late yesterday. It felt like I could not do ... Read More »

What’s Next (Louisiana)

Editor’s note: Slavery is an integral part of the American story and those who were forced to come to the US in chains, are no less immigrants than any other group. Not only was their freedom taken, but in many cases, their personal family history was lost. On this web site of immigration stories, we pick up their descendants’ story ... Read More »

Crossing Twice (Mexico)

I crossed twice and made it both times without getting caught. I grew up in El Limon, Michoacan, Mexico. I can sometimes remember riding on horses and taking care of the cattle on the farm with my dad because I stopped going to school after 5th grade. On Christmas, we would bathe in the cold river water because it was ... Read More »

Alone (Mexico)

I, Maria Teresa Lucatero, left my home in search of a future better than what was to be ahead of me, all while I was struggling to find a way out of being alone. I was born to a large family on September 3rd, 1959, with a total of 9 siblings, and my mother and father. My mother had a ... Read More »

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