First Refugees' Thanksgiving Dinner

I was invited by friend Mariestella to attend the First Refugees' Thanksgiving Dinner at the Ethiopian Community Development Council Center in Arlington, VA.  I of course agreed to attend because I really enjoy working and helping the less fortunate.  When I arrived, there were several tables of families and I decided to sit next to one that arrived from Iran six months ago.  We talked briefly about experiences due to a language barrier but they all expressed that they were extremely happy to be here in the United States.  

As the program started, I decided to take pictures.  Some were very shy and others were quick to stick their thumbs up and smile.  There was a live performance of music and dance from Bhutan which was awesome!  Check out some of the captured moments...

Bhutanese dancers

Sarah Zullo  

Director of Ethiopian Community Development Council

Mark H. Greenberg

Acting Assistant Secretary, Administration for Children and Families

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Felicia Escobar

Senior Policy Director for Immigration, White House

Thumbs up 

from the Republic of the Congo

Thumbs up from Bhutan

Friends from the Republic of the Congo

Smiles from Ethiopia

This experience touched me in more ways than one.  I can only imagine what half of them have been through but you would never be able to tell because the room was filled with smiles and laughter.  I am extremely grateful and thankful to have met every last one of them.  So as I get ready to visit my family, 

I want to wish EVERYONE a safe and Happy Thanksgiving!

Hugs,

Mel