I am just about to fly out of Boise, Idaho, having spent a week here observing a Full Circle Exchange project in which 60 refugees from conflict areas were employed to help put together a promotion for Mother’s Day. Gorgeous designs by a women-owned business, Soréh Designs, were parlayed into cups, scarves, aprons, cards, and other goodies that will be assembled into an island display. Items in the display were produced by a women-owned business in Haiti and Dream Chocolates in Boise (which also employs female refugees).
I interviewed a number of the refugees. They were pleased with the assignment, not just for the pay, but for the dignity and safety–and the kind way they were treated. Many of these women have experienced extraordinary trauma. Though this was a temporary job, it provided them with much-needed US job experience, letters of reference, and the like . More on this project to come, but just wanted to post something, before the “wheels up” moment, to say what an good experience it has been to be here and observe this effort.
These refugees were pleased with the opportunity to do peaceful, creative work while establishing a track record that will help them get US jobs.