These stories will introduce you to refugees we worked with in the Greek camps. We are following their journey and to let them know they have not been forgotten.

NM – 32 year old, single man from Afghanistan

He has a two year certificate in Business Management and speaks seven languages: Pashtu, Persian, Urdu-Hindi, Turkish, German, English and a little Greek.

NM worked in Samos, Greece as a translator for Hands On Global.

At 14 NM left Afghanistan as it was not safe.  Later he returned to obtain his two year certificate.  He was rejected twice for asylum in Greece.  He paid a smuggler to cross into Albania.  From there he went to Kosovo and then Serbia.  For a year he tried to leave Serbia to get to Croatia and Slovenia but the police would not let him leave Serbia.  He finally got to Romania and applied for asylum. 

He assisted the Romania police as a translator.  It was suggested to improve his life, he must leave Romania.  Next stop was Germany where he has been for 19 months.  He has paid an attorney to help him with his residency. 

Since the area he lives in needs employees, the refugees are allowed to work without their residency permits, which is different from MA in Part 1 and KST in Part 2.  As such NM works five days a week for Amazon.  He has received a promotion as a trainer because of his language skills.  

He shares an apartment with two other refugees who also work at Amazon.

He is on a two to three month waiting list to take more German classes.

NM has two married sisters and a brother who live in Germany about a two hour train ride away.  His mother, his brother and a married sister still live in Afghanistan.  Every month he sends his mother money.  We had the opportunity to have a “face time” with his mother.

When in Afghanistan he worked for an international agency.  For this reason the Taliban would never allow him to go back to his home country.

He contacted the US Embassy as he would like to come to the USA.  He worked for a US company as a temporary contractor. This company does not recognize his work to help him get a VISA because his contract was temporary.

The story is similar to other single men from Afghanistan:  wait….have patience.  He knows of one Afghani man who has been in Germany for seven years and still has no documents.  This man’s attorney tells him, “wait….have patience….maybe next year.”

And so NM waits.

Tama and Cathy, Hands on Global, reporting from the road.