OSHKOSH, Wis. – Moving anywhere can be difficult, but refugees have to face the stress of a new culture, a new language and new surroundings.
The Oshkosh Police Department is working to help those resettling in their city feel right at home.
“We have very different culture. Refugees, when they’re back home, they look to the police as different,” said Sabah Rawanduzy, Kurdish Iraqi refugee.
Rawanduzy works with World Relief Fox Valley to help Arabic speaking refugees settle in Oshkosh. Now, he has some friends in uniform to help him out.
“They may have had some negative experiences prior to coming to the United States, and it’s important for us to reach out to them and emphasize that we’re here to help,” said Kate Mann, Oshkosh Police Department.
Oshkosh Police are helping to break down the language barrier and culture barrier by letting the refugees know what to do if they get stopped in traffic or have to report a crime.
“I think it’ll be safer for everyone when we understand each other and build good relationships,” said Rawanduzy.
Oshkosh hosts the second largest number of refugees in the state, with 800 people resettling in the city, according to WisContext.
“We are very lucky to have a good population of refugees from different countries that have chosen to resettle in Oshkosh and call Oshkosh home,” said Mann.
Rawanduzy says the refugees feel accepted by the city and are thankful for a police force that’s willing to work with them.