Until last week, when I got a job with the International Rescue Committee as a refugee case manager, I had not idea Salt Lake City was a major refugee relocation center. Each year around 400 refugees are relocated to the Salt Lake Valley in Utah to start new lives as future American citizens. Many of the relocated refugees have spent up to 30 years in a refugee camps and so everything about the US is new to them. For example many refugees have never signed a lease before, been to a grocery store, or even been in a car. While the first year or so is a very difficult adjustment for many of the refugees, eventually they settle into American life and, like the rest of us, live out the American dream. As part of my job I am also able to work with many refugees that have been in the US longer than 5 years and most of them own their own houses, have great jobs with benefits, have sent all their children to college and university, and are full fledged US citizens. In fact I am told very few refugees, if any, require welfare assistance after their first year in the US. Every time I meet one of these great Americans I am humbled to think what they have gone through and how hard they have fought to get where they are…and if they can work hard and be successful, then I sure can! My heart goes out to all the refugees in the world and what a great country we live in that allows many of these destitute people to relocate to hope and prosperity.P.S. Sorry we have been slacking, we are having a tough time adjusting to our new lives (and real jobs) in SLC and finding time to do things we love (i.e. the internet).