Where are you from? (City, country)
Where are you being resettled to?
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA
How long ago did you apply for resettlement?
I first applied for resettlement in Syria through UNHCR, in 2006. But circumstances forced me to leave just before my departure date in 2009; my brother-in-law was kidnapped so I had to come to Amman and look after my sister. I had to re-start the process from Amman in 2011.
How did you hear about IOM?
I heard about resettlement with UNHCR and IOM through friends who have already been resettled. I have a lot of friends who have been in the States a long time now, some have already become naturalized, and have come back here on holiday.
Are you traveling with any members of your family/being resettled near any family or friends?
Yes I’m traveling with my family.
How has the Cultural Orientation course influenced your expectations about life in your country of destination?
I already had a lot of information about life in the USA from my friends, but the course helped with additional detail. I learned that if you work hard you can succeed in the USA, and that in America people have equal rights and there is no such thing as a second-class citizen. Our teacher is excellent, and so knowledgeable about the States.
What is your biggest fear or worry about the new life that awaits you?
I’m worried I won’t find work, or that I’ll be forced to do a job I hate. I love sports, so ideally I’d like to find something related to that.
What are you most excited about?
Starting a new life, living in safety and stability, having a fixed home with my own keys and furniture, a safe place where no one can tell me to leave or what to do.