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Treasure Valley's refugees highlighted in E-book

Posted at 8:51 PM, Jan 10, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-10 22:51:58-05

Whether or not you agree with a new set of refugees moving into Idaho, groups from several different countries resettled in the Treasure Valley years ago. Many of them are children.

A group of Boise State University students have developed a guide for teachers.

These children left their country for a reason, and a group of master's students got to the bottom of their stories to find out what exactly it was they were fleeing from.

Somalia, Ukraine, Iran, Afghanistan, Bosnia included on the list. Each refugee group in the Treasure Valley was researched. Through this collaborative research effort, this is what stood out most to their instructor.

"The level of violence these people were fleeing from and the fact that so many of these people coming here are children... it's children being exposed," said Dr. David Gabbard, a BSU professor.

The group also found that the effects from what the children saw were profound.

"Some of the students actually did a project around Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. And, a lot of the kids coming into the schools [here] ... they're traumatized," Gabbard said.

Trish Pinkert-Branner graduated with a master's degree in bilingual education and re-enrolled soon thereafter to pursue a bachelor's degree in secondary education.

She studied Iranian refugees as part of this project. In doing so, she was saddened by the statistic that out of 10.5 million refugees seeking resettlement, less than one percent will find permanent homes.

Pinkert-Branner urges those who are wary about bringing refugees into the U.S. to have some compassion and believe in the government's system.

"It's important that future educators, like myself, are aware of the fact that we need to value these kids too," Pinkert-Branner said. "We need to make sure their language is valued, their culture is valued and valued as human beings just as much as any other kids in the classroom."

The project will continue to be built upon.

In the near future, the e-book will be made available to the public online.