SF Global Shapers hosted Author & Refugee Rights Activist Sandra Uwiringiyimana at a ShaperTalk on Saturday, 3/9, and we wanted to share key takeaways from the event:
- Although Sandra had experienced brutal hardship at such young age, she started the discussion by saying how much she loved and loves Congo and that she would not trade her childhood experience there with anything else. Being able to make peace with her past was very inspiring and allowed most attendees to ask more courageous questions!
- Sandra discussed the struggle of a war refugee having to adapt to new life in foreign countries and the need for personalized mental health care giving system toward these individuals to ensure they can integrate themselves successfully in the new surrounding and thrive to make an impact. During college, Sandra struggled with her mental health, and there was no word for it in the language her family speaks at home, so her family had a hard time understanding her struggle.
- As advanced as the United States is, all attendees acknowledged that there are still many urgent issues that needs special attention from the community such as homeless & drug problems.
- It is important that foreign workers/students believe in themselves and are able to voice their opinions freely and to not ‘fit-in’ to the American culture. Their uniqueness is actually their strength so they should never hide it!
- For more information about Sandra, check out her book , How Dare the Sun Rise, and her foundation, Jimbere Fund.
To learn about upcoming ShaperTalks, check out our Facebook page!