Think about this: You are 14 or 15-years-old. You are moving to a new country, don’t know the language, the customs or culture of where you now live.
That’s where the International Rescue Committee in Tallahassee comes in to help.
In February, the group created it’s first literacy program. Now, 44 Congolese students and counting from grades 6 to 12, are not only learning English, but also ways to transition into American society.
Floribert Mubalama knows firsthand that it can be hard to find your footing when you transition to life in America as a refugee or immigrant. I met Mubalama through the Congolese Integration Network (CIN), an organization part of the growing group of partners supported by Communities of Opportunity to strengthen the connections that cultural groups have to their communities.
Mubalama courageously shared his story to help affirm that isolation is a common experience for many refugees and immigrants and that becoming involved with cultural community organizations can break that isolation and help people thrive emotionally and economically.
Congolese and Congolese-Americans living in America want to change the narrative around the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). They’ve launched the inaugural Congolese Diaspora Impact Summit (CDIS), which will take place in New York City on September 21st; in the midst of the United Nations General Assembly.
The new president of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) took office in January. Al Jazeera reported that his first message was one of reconciliation in the vast and diverse country located in sub-Saharan Africa.
Refugees living in Phoenix say Félix Tshisekedi, the new president, got more specific at the end of June, calling for an end to conflict in parts of eastern DRC. The area is home to people named Banyamulenge, an ethnic minority with Rwandan ancestry.
Jean Kapenda always hoped to help African Americans to find their African roots. That dream came true in a very personal way. Kapenda, a criminal justice professor at Weber State University in Ogden, Utah, has been interested in genealogy and ancestry for a long time. A few years ago, he did a swab and sent it to a genetic testing site.
After getting the results, Kapenda, who is originally from Democratic Republic of Congo, has been able to trace hundreds of relatives in the Americas, most of them the descendents of people enslaved and sent on ships across the ocean.
Meet the new Miss African Roots 2019, Cindy Makita. Born and raised in South Africa, Cindy Makita has a Congolese heritage. She moved to Miami, Florida in 2014 to attend Florida International University. In 2018 she graduated Magna Cum Laude, as a Worlds Ahead Graduate and as an Honors student.
Miss African Roots is a unique, bi-annual pageant competition which promotes a sense of community, confidence, and pride for the motherland of Africa within the United States.
Marilyne Tatang, 23, crossed nine borders in two months to reach Mexico from the West African nation of Cameroon, fleeing political violence after police torched her house, she said.
She plans to soon take a bus north for four days and then cross a tenth border, into the United States. She is not alone – a record number of fellow Africans are flying to South America and then traversing thousands of miles of highway and a treacherous tropical rainforest to reach the United States.
They may be separated by language – Portuguese for Angolans, English for Rwandans, French for the Congolese – but all of Greater Portland’s African immigrant communities do share one means of communication: soccer. Or, as they are more likely to call it, football.
To welcome newly arrived asylum seekers, the Congolese Community of Maine teamed up with players from several other African countries for an afternoon of soccer in Portland’s East Bayside neighborhood.
A shelter in Buffalo, New York, operated by health center, Jericho Road, has been providing recent arrivals from the Democratic Republic of the Congo medical aid, legal services, and educational opportunities.
Through the winter, the families streamed into Portland, bringing stories of violence and persecution in their home countries in central Africa. Portland’s shelter for homeless families soon filled to capacity, so the city put mats on the floor of a Salvation Army gym for 80 more people. Then that, too, wasn’t enough. This month, 250 migrants from Africa arrived in this northeastern city of roughly 67,000 residents in the span of just a week, overflowing the overflow space and forcing Portland to hastily convert a basketball arena into an emergency shelter. Continue reading “Maine Needed New, Young Residents. African Migrants Began Arriving by the Dozens”→
There has been wild celebrations all over Canada as Toronto Raptors became the first team from the country to win the NBA finals. Three Africans were pivotal in helping Raptors beat Golden State Warriors in Game 6 to to win the championship for the first time in their history.
Raptors President, Masai Ujiri from Nigeria, Pascal Siakem from Cameroon and Serge Ibaka from Congo DR are among the African contingent that have brought joy to Canada.