January 31, 2007
Every year, about 150 people escape their dangerous homelands and settle into our area.
These people come to our area from horrific situations, where their lives are literally in danger every day.
It is with the help of the International Rescue Committee, and generous community members, that these refugees are given a chance to succeed in America.
"Since I was the oldest in my family, I had to work hard to save my family," explained 19 year-old Abdullah Nooruddin.
Abdullah is a refugee from Afghanistan. He and his family came to America with hopes of a better life.
But a better life includes taking his sister to school, his mom to work, grocery shopping for the family, and working two jobs..one at the Omni where he gets off late.
Juggling these everyday tasks is made even more difficult without a car.
"(When) Getting off work at 11 or 11:30 (at night), there is no bus and you cannot afford to take a taxi," Abdullah remembered.
Enter, the IRC, where a generous citizen donated their car, which the IRC, in turn, donated to Abdullah, and his family.
"I'm sure that if we didn't have the car, my mom couldn't go to work, because where she works, there is no bus."
Monte Hackney with the IRC helps pair cars with those who need them. Of course, though, there are many more people in need, than there are cars, so Hackney must prioritize.
"We must determine who has the most need in terms of where they live, where their jobs are, how many people are going to benefit from the car," said Hackney.
With this car, every door seems wide open to Abdullah. He can make more money, and help support his family. These are opportunities Abdullah is unspeakably grateful for.
"When Monte called me and he said that someone had donated the car, and we took it to DMV, I was very excited and I don't know how to thank them."
Donating a car is a good deed, but also a tax write-off, since the IRC does not re-sell the car.
If you would like to help a refugee, by donating a car, or in another way, call the IRC at (434) 979-7772.