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Safe and Hopeful Passage

Mee Ler and Por Kue shed tears when they told us about the day they fled home

 

An 82-year-old mother, Mee Ler and her 45-year-old daughter, Por Kue recall their family’s desperate flight from their village in Myanmar 15 years ago. Por Kue is the story teller as she remembers everything clearly. “That day we heard there were shootings in our neighboring village,” she says. “Everyone was told to flee because if we stayed, we would die.”

She and her late husband decided to take the whole family and walked for what turned out to be three days and night. Eventually they arrived at the Thai border and got refugee status. Official refugee status and supports from UNHCR and other agencies have given the family a future, the woman says.

 “Living in the camp, we feel safe, and my children can go to school. I can also attend livelihood projects to pave the way for a new life,” says Por Kue who has seen her four children grow up in the refugee camp.

She says the safety and opportunities in the camp have allowed them all to dream. “They want to be teachers and doctors,” Por Kue says. The family has applied for resettlement under UNHCR’s highly successful resettlement program which has already seen more than 70,000 refugees leave the refugee camps in Thailand for new lives in countries like the United States, Australia and Canada. “I want to go to America,” she says, her eyes glowing with hope. “This is not for me but for my children to make their dreams come true.” Por Kue says.