Crossing Borders Baltimore – I Am

This winter, our Crossing Borders program in Baltimore with the Refugee Youth Project, gave 15 refugee teens the opportunity to explore their new city of Baltimore; it’s similarities and differences to their home country, culminating in a visual “letter” to the city and it’s people entitled, “Dear Baltimore.” In April, these students participated in a second workshop examining the word “refugee” by visiting the other people in their neighborhood that came to this country under similar circumstances but were of different ethnicities than their own. This project was titled, “I Am,” because in exploring the stories of the various cultures residing adjacent to them, these students learned more about themselves and the community that surrounds and shapes them.

Nations Photo Lab of Owings Mills generously donated the exhibition printings for our Crossing Borders series this year.

Crossing Borders Baltimore / Photo by Tila Neupane

Life is not easy. Life is full of struggles but we have to do hard work ourselves to make our lives easy.
I’m a young lady originally from Nepal, actually I was a refugee in Nepal for almost 16 years and now I’m in America. I live with my family, I love my family very much.
– Bishnu

Crossing Borders Baltimore / Photo by Kibra Asfaha

My name is Kibra. I learned different things in different houses. We went to three different houses and saw a lot of things that are different than the other houses. There were different cultures in each family. We went to Bishnu’s house and we learned that her grandfather has the magic to know what will happen to you in the future. We saw their food and it smelled good and tasted nice

This program is so cool, all the students like it. I learned where all the students come from and what they like to eat.
One thing I learned about myself is that I really like this program and I have so much fun with all of the students. We have so much fun. I also learned about being a photographer and how to take a lot of pictures. I love this program and have so much fun with all your work. Thank you.
– Kibra

Crossing Borders Baltimore / Photo by Suk Maya Tamang

Hello everybody I am Suk from Baltimore city. I have been in the United States for four months. I am the oldest child in my house. I’m always happy and I look tall. My home country is Nepal and it’s a beautiful country. I like to do things but often feel shy and afraid. I’m afraid to speak alone in groups because if I say something wrong people will laugh at me. I’m new that’s why it’s difficult to understand American people. I speak a little bit of English. I’m in grade 11 now in Patterson High School. I only have a few friends in class but in Nepal I have a lot of friends. I like to do homework, read beautiful novels, watch Hindu movies, and make new friends. My country is very important to me as well as my family because they help me every step.
One thing I learned from Mustafa’s family is that they are from Iraq. In their culture the ladies or women wear scarves on their head. They have a book in Koran, which is a prayer book they read every morning and pray. They respect their elders and love the younger kids. Their family is very respectful.
One thing I learned about myself this week is that there are different kinds of cultures. I am so lucky because I get this opportunity to learn new things like taking pictures and including lots of people.
– Suk

Crossing Borders Baltimore / Photo by Shrooq Abad


Crossing Borders Baltimore / Photo by Karar Hashim


Crossing Borders Baltimore / Photo by Ghadeer Abad


Crossing Borders Baltimore / Photo by Teklewyni Asfaha

My name is Agut. I am from Ethiopia and I’m 15 years old. I have been here for four months. I am very sad everyday because I miss my mother’s relatives in my home country. Sometime I am happy because of my education. I like my education. Yesterday I went to the schoolhouse and learned things about my country and culture.
The things I learned about myself. I learned how to take a picture. Before I didn’t know how to take a picture of myself. I learned how to make friends and to use my imagination.
– Agut

Crossing Borders Baltimore / Photo by Ghadeer Abad

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