This interview was conducted over email with Faridah Bahume, a Case Manager with Church World Service and
a refugee from the Democratic Republic of Congo, by Gargi Mahadeshwar, a second-year undergraduate student working for the Duke Human Rights Center at the Franklin Humanities Institute.

Please join us for FLEE: A Documentary, a documentary screening and panel in which Faridah will be speaking

about her journey as a refugee and her work in Church World Service on Tuesday, November 30.

Gargi Mahadeshwar (GM): What was the story behind your decision to leave the Democratic Republic of
Congo?

Faridah Bahume (FB): I left my home country because of the war.

GM: What was the most difficult part of leaving?

FB: When I was running without my family and without knowing where am going to.

GM: What was it like when you first arrived in the US?

FB: When first arrived in US I was super exited hope to be safe and same time worried about new life that I am about to start .

GM: What surprised you the most about the United States when you arrived?

FB: I arrived in February and was winter , my case manager picks me up from Airport to my apartment , next day when I woke up, I looked outside and starting walk in neighborhood and no one was outside . It surprised me because back home people are always walk around , doors open anytime.

GM: How were you able to find strength throughout your journey?

FB: I think it was very had because of language barrier but when I get here church world service had ESL class , job class, money class and they connected me to Durham literacy center to learn computer skills and other skills : Learning experiences where I can work and complete my goals and help community

GM: What did you learn from your journey and how has it impacted you?

FB: I enjoyed the experiences and skills that I learned and help share with others.

GM: What advice do you have for people who may be in a similar position?

FB: I will encourage them to keep learning don’t give up no matter what.

GM: Now that you work in refugee resettlement, what lessons can you bring to your work?

FB: I do share my story with which I believe that is the exemplification of courage and grit that most people and I think is something people across the world are struggling with.  People need to hear stories of inspiration, determination, courage.