The VPR story features reading by Nijaza Šemić : community member, mother, wise woman, and Home School Liaison in the Burlington School District and commentary by Rajev Dahal a senior at Burlington High School.
Look out for Katherine Paterson at the 2010 Burlington Book Festival on September 24-26.
And find all four stories from VPR re Day of the Pelican here. With titles like “Flight: What refugees leave behind when they are forced to leave home”.
*The transition to life here is often difficult for refugees. For children, a new life means a new school – one that can be very different from any they have known before. 11-year-old Susma Adhikari is a refugee from Bhutan. She attended school at a refugee camp in Nepal:
(Susma) “In Nepal we have to, in school we have to sit on the floor, mud floor it was kind of dirty, and we had to sit on a mat, here we have our own desks and we have everything we need. In Nepal we don’t have that much stuff. There we were really scared from teachers because we had to respect them. It was kind of hard to learn there, but here, everyone is good and nice.”
*(Wertlieb) Filmmaker Mira Niagolova says the Iraqi families she’s observed have also found it difficult to adjust:
(Niagolova) “We have probably about 80 Iraqi families so far and I assume we’ll expect more. In general the Iraqi population is very well educated and they are somehow frustrated because their expectations haven’t been met so far. They want to get back their middle class life that they had in Iraq, but here they’re in a different position. They’re eager to re-establish their middle class life.”