Friday, January 22, 2010

Recruiting Burmese Refugee Families

Hey everyone, I hope everyone's winter breaks went well and that you all got some good R&R. Currently, I'm working with a coordinator and home instructor here at Dallas to try to reach out to some of the Burmese refugee families that have settled in the Vickery Meadows area- a super culturally diverse area. Because of the oppresive military regime now in power in Burma and the lack of human rights, thousands of Burmese people have fled to America. In meetings with the International Rescue Committee and Heart House in Dallas, I've learned that the Burmese are very open to learning and that they would really benefit from a program like HIPPY. The problem with this is that there are 3 different languages spoken in Burma and trying to find interpretors is proving a difficult task. Thankfully we believe the IRC will be able to provide us with a translator for the first month or so but after that we will have to enlist the help of volunteers in the community that are able to translate. We've been told that the Burmese are a very community- oriented culture so maybe we'll be able to find someone that would be willing to help us out on this. So, we're trying to move forward with this so that we can hopefully start these families doing the HIPPY program pretty soon! If anyone has any suggestions please let me know.