The Karen people have experienced oppression for over sixty years with little to no access to healthcare and services. Due to this lack of access to healthcare, 721 women die per 100,000 live births.

As soon as the doors open at the refugee center, people start streaming in, a barrage of needs and desperate requests: “I can’t get food coupons.” “Can I take English classes?” “I need clothing.” “The hospital won’t help me.” “I don’t have a place to live.” Each request is a reminder of the sheer numbers of refugees and the limited resources ...

Lebanon is a small country, and I used to live on the outskirts of Beirut, which is overpopulated. People were friendly and curious about others, especially when their new neighbor was the only Asian-American in that area. 

My very first language class was held downtown between the hours of 8:00pm and 10:00pm.  My supervisor was less than thrilled. I was on my own, new to the country, and finding my way around the city.