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Burmese Refugee Defies All Odds


By Johnna Gadomski

L fled from Burma to Malaysia 28 years ago. Although he faced many hardships as an asylum seeker, his challenges were compounded when he lost both his arms in a tragic machine accident. With help and resources from New American Pathways (New AP), L has beaten all odds and is now thriving.

New AP helped L obtain a prosthetic arm – he can now write his own name for the first time in 17 years! He has even completed the necessary specialized trainings to get his own driver’s license and, with the help of New AP and private donors, L equipped his car with adaptive equipment to meet his needs. These tools have allowed L to achieve a level of self-sufficiency. He can drive himself to the doctor, visit his son’s school, and maintain his independence.

He says he is very happy with his new life in the U.S.: “I come here [New AP] if I need anything,” says L. “Everything can be normal now that I am in the U.S.”

The only thing more remarkable than L’s resiliency is his positivity. With plans of occupational therapy, L looks forward to improving his mobility and motor skills even further.

His radiant smile and joyful spirit inspire anyone who is lucky enough to meet him. New AP is honored to have L as a client, and we look forward to seeing how he continues to thrive for many years to come.

An affiliate of Church World Service and Episcopal Migration Ministries
Church World Services Episcopal Migration Ministries
2300 Henderson Mill Rd., NE
Suite 100
Atlanta, GA 30345
404.299.6099
United Way Community Partner
In partnership with MARTA
AmeriCorps