Sahra is from Somalia, but she had to leave when the rebel war became too violent and fearful. In Uganda she started a small restaurant, but then was severely burned on her arms and hands in an accident with hot oil. Soon after that, her husband passed away and she lost the business. Sahra's ability to use her hands is limited now, as her burns and the nerve damage in her arm are still very painful.
"It was very important for me to use my hands. I used to prepare food, do laundry, and shop for groceries. I worked hard before the accident, but my daughter has to do the work now."
Because of her injuries and the loss of her husband, Sahra lived in a huge refugee camp in Uganda for many years. But with the help of an organization of churches, Sahra was able to come to St. Paul about four years ago. She has been in Mankato for a year and lives with her daughter and two grandchildren. Sahra's mother is in Ohio and sometimes everyone gets together for a family reunion.
Sahra says, "I like it here because it is safe."