Rohingya Reunions is my collection of stories to honor the families who have changed my life and inspired me to start Books Unbound. My story with the Rohingya people goes back to June 2015 when I discovered a group of Rohingya women and children in southern Thailand.
They fled Myanmar and embarked on a 2-month journey to get to Malaysia, where their family members were waiting. The boat stopped on a small island between Thailand and Myanmar instead, where they were abandoned. A couple days later, they were rescued and taken to a shelter near my house. They never made it to Malaysia.
After moving back to the States for university, I thought I would never see them again. In January 2017, I got a phone call that changed everything. These families were resettled in the United States. That’s when I started reuniting with families across the States. I took it a step further to find their family members in Malaysia, Thailand, Bangladesh, and Europe. I continue to track down family members, piece together family trees, and document their stories across the world.
Rohingya Reunions is a storytelling series dedicated to the people who have changed my life — I am so grateful to be a small part of their story.