Facing a world map, most Americans would not be able to point to the Himalayan country of Bhutan. But thousands of Nepali speaking refugees from this Buddhist-majority nation are arriving on North American soil, and soon will be part of the rich cultural fabric of U.S. society.
On this edition, correspondent Adelaide Chen brings us sounds from the journey of these new arrivals. From saying goodbye to the refugee camps, to settling into Oakland, California, their story of starting a new life is full of hard times, especially in this economy.
Ananta Gurung, Bhutanese American Community Center director; Don Climent, International Rescue Committee director; Tul Bahadur Tiwari, father and Bhutanese refugee; Gopal, Tiwari’s brother; Rianawati Rianawati, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Damak Office director; Padam Kumar Ghimirey, cultural orientation class participant; Januka Upreti, grandmother; Peter Newbegin, International Rescue Committee staff member; Damanta Kharel, Bhutanese refugee who went from graduate studies to serving fast food; George Rupp, International Rescue Committee president; Binod Gurung, Bhutanese refugee; Sushila, Gurung’s sister; Ann Strandoo, International Organization for Migration cultural orientation coordinator; Deepak Gurung, waiter and Bhutanese refugee; Bir Thapa, taxi driver and Bhutanese refugee; Phurba Tshering Tamang, Bhutanese refugee.