Category Archives: 1975 – 2000

Halfway Around the World (India)

At the young age of 23, Shreya Acharya moved 7672 miles across the world from New Delhi, India to Stanford, California. Her soon-to-be fiancé, Vishal Acharya, was a graduate student at Stanford University at the time. While she had to leave her entire family behind in India, immigrating gave her the opportunity to start another one in the States. As ... Read More »

Baker and Role Model (Mexico)

I wouldn’t say I had it easy, but then again, no one here really did. I was born and raised in Aguililla, Michoacan, Mexico on July 20, 1929. You see, growing up then, no one really had any money. Michoacan was filled with families living in poverty, as well as a lot of orphans. As for me, I was part ... Read More »

Religious Tolerance Abducted (Iraq)

Margaret Petros’ family is Assyrian Christian and they noted ominous changes soon after Saddam Hussein took power in Iraq. At school Margaret had been in a class on Christianity while her Muslim classmates attended a class on Islam, but suddenly the class in Christianity was cancelled and she was given a Koran to study. Neighbors were fleeing in the night ... 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 »

“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 »

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 »

The Strength Between You (Mexico)

The strength of a woman is not measured by the impact that all her hardships in life have had on her; but the strength of a woman is measured by the extent of her refusal to allow those hardships to dictate her and who she becomes. I was born on January 17, 1982 in Jiquilpan, Michoacan but I grew up ... Read More »

The Struggle (Mexico)

From the sweet smell fruit orchards; to the bitter gas and fog that filled up San Francisco. I had no option in coming here. I had no initial reaction, I didn’t know what to think. I had a lot of fun in Mexico. I liked school, I participated in dances at festivals, which I enjoyed a lot. I really liked ... Read More »

One Way Ticket (Mexico)

“I would come back, I promise.” Just like thousands of others that had promised to their families. But just like the thousands of others, I haven’t returned. I lived in Michoacan. I was like any other kid. I went to school. I played with my friends. I had dreams. We lived in an okay neighborhood. Everyone knew each other and ... Read More »

A Great Journey (El Salvador)

“Corre! La migra!” the coyote yelled, “Run! It’s immigration!” To this day, I’m traumatized by the word “run.” Who wouldn’t be? It’s all I did while crossing the border and it was the only thing that kept me from being sent back. I will never forget the long cold nights where we spent hours running. It was as if we ... Read More »

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