In 2012, over 10,000 refugees from Burma will be resettled in the U.S., joining more than 55,000 who have arrived since 2006. Linkage with health services is integral to resettlement, yet many refugees face the challenge of negotiating a healthcare system that is unfamiliar with their language, backgrounds, traditional beliefs and practices, and health issues.
Refugees from Burma, also known as Myanmar, come from one of the most ethnically diverse countries in the world. Most of those resettled in the U.S. belong to one of three ethnic minority groups: the Karen (emphasis on the second syllable), the Karenni, and the Chin.” (Refugee Health Technical Assistance Center, 2012)
In Kansas, as of the end of 2014, the Chin are the largest refugee resettlement group (41% of the population), the Karen third (11%), Karenni fourth (10%), and the Burmese sixth (6%) (Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas, 2015).
This 88-page booklet gives an extensive and detailed overview of Burma, its history, its people, and considerations for working with refugees from there.
This 22-minute video “features interviews with refugees from Burma, talking about the long process of resettlement.
This webpage gives a thorough yet easy-to-read profile of the Chin people from Burma. History, beliefs, medical considerations, and more information can be found here.
This 12-minute video gives a history of the Karen refugee experience after a lengthy introduction of Karen music, imagery, and art.
An hour-long YouTube video that gives a historical context to the situation of the Karen people and highlights the current situation