Friday, July 7, 2017

A Good Day: New Citizen Ceremony {Denver Humanitarian Photographer}

Yesterday I attended a New Citizen Ceremony with my sweet friend Rukia. She became a citizen of the United States yesterday, and while that is an easy phrase to say, her journey has been long and difficult. She arrived in the US a handful of years ago, coming from the war torn country of Somalia, enduring refugee camps in Kenya, and seeing more life and death than anyone should ever have to see. Earlier this year, with the changing political climate, she was "so scary" (her way of saying "so scared") that someone was going to come to her house and deport her. She was not sleeping and trying to figure out who would take care of her American born children when she was taken away.

Fast forward to yesterday....when I picked her up she had the biggest smile on her face! She kept saying "no afraid anymore" and "today is a good day!". I just kept thinking, yes, Rukia, my beautiful is a good day!

There were 30+ people from 22 different nations taking the oath of citizenship yesterday. We honored each country of origin, reminded every new citizen that it is within our national interest to tell their stories, and welcomed them to a country that is better when we honor diversity. (And then reminded them that they have a voice and helped them register to vote!!)

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