Immigrant Tales

Naturalization, With An Artistic Twist

by Lucy Gellman | Jun 24, 2016 12:32 pm | Comments (2)

Lucy Gellman Photo On Friday just before noon, longtime New Havener Allison Parkes scored the hottest ticket at the International Festival of Arts & Ideas: A first-ever naturalization ceremony on the sun-soaked New Haven Green, where she and 25 other immigrants, representing 19 countries, became U.S. citizens.

For the now-naturalized citizen from Jamaica, a mother of two who takes care of her mother and works in food service at Yale-New Haven Hospital, that’s reason to celebrate. It’s been a year of submitting and resubmitting grueling paperwork after having lived in the city for years, she said, and she’s happy to have it behind her. 

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Refugee Art Inspires, And Shakes You Up

by Allan Appel | Jun 15, 2016 7:30 am

Allan Appel Photo Ridha Ali Ahmed travels light.

His suitcase contains only an always-sharp pencil for the endless forms to be filled out, a demure but sturdy heart locket full of love, and a long-stemmed rose. The valise is only about two by three inches, is open to the air on both sides, and has a black handle almost too tiny to see or even grasp.

Yet this “Refugee Suitcase,” and creative work like it, have enabled its creator — a member of the persecuted Turkmen minority in Iraq — to travel very far, eventually settle in New Haven, become a U.S. citizen, and, most importantly, stay sane through the healing powers of art.

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The Latest On WNHH Radio

by Lucy Gellman | Jun 14, 2016 7:53 am

Paul Bass Photos The latest programs from WNHH radio check in with community members about the massacre in Orlando, revisit immigration reform and the Brock Turner case, meet new authors with new summer reads, and time-travel to a simple time that actually wasn’t so simple. 

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Today On WNHH

by Lucy Gellman | Jun 6, 2016 12:28 pm

Lucy Gellman Photo Today’s programs on WNHH radio celebrate summer camp and opera music, look forward to July’s nominating conventions, weigh in on local infrastructure, get some quality mom time in the mix, and revisit New Haven’s hyper-industrial past circa World War II.

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