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Old 06-01-2012, 11:30 AM
 
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I was reading something online about Somalis working in community gardens associated with Burlington College and had not heard of any Somali immigration to Vermont. I know of some Somali populations relocating to Maine (Lewiston?) and a lot in Minnesota, but VT? Can someone enlighten me? When did they come? How many are there? Why are they settling in states with climates that are so different from their native countries?
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Old 06-01-2012, 12:05 PM
 
Location: Western views of Mansfield/Camels Hump!
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My fiancé just spent some time in Somalia and we ended up finding this organization while doing some research...haven't had any contact with them though.

Somali Bantu Community Association of Vermont
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Old 06-01-2012, 01:55 PM
 
Location: Winter Springs, FL
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Not really in Burlington. Winooski has a large Somali population. All or most of the Somali population live in Winooski. I think most live in Winooski because it's more affordable than Burlington. A large number of them work at FAHC in various departments. I think Winooski has at least three Halal markets now. All Somali owned. This is an article from over a year ago on two of them. Praise Be to Winooski | Seven Days
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Old 06-01-2012, 02:20 PM
 
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Interesting to read about Somalis in VT. From what I've read, it's been a mixed bag in terms of the Somali immigrants in Lewiston, ME, some good news, some not so good. What is the impression of the impact of Somali immigration in VT? I still don't understand why that particular population would move to places with harsh winters, vs places with warmer year round temperatures, which more closely match their county of origin.
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Old 06-01-2012, 02:42 PM
 
Location: The Woods
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xz2y View Post
Interesting to read about Somalis in VT. From what I've read, it's been a mixed bag in terms of the Somali immigrants in Lewiston, ME, some good news, some not so good. What is the impression of the impact of Somali immigration in VT? I still don't understand why that particular population would move to places with harsh winters, vs places with warmer year round temperatures, which more closely match their county of origin.
A lot of them have gotten into trouble...
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Old 06-01-2012, 02:42 PM
 
Location: Beautiful Rhode Island
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They were relocated as refugees by government agencies. There is now a crime problem in many of the areas where they were sent.
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Old 06-01-2012, 03:54 PM
 
Location: Maine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xz2y View Post
I was reading something online about Somalis working in community gardens associated with Burlington College and had not heard of any Somali immigration to Vermont. I know of some Somali populations relocating to Maine (Lewiston?) and a lot in Minnesota, but VT? Can someone enlighten me? When did they come? How many are there? Why are they settling in states with climates that are so different from their native countries?
There have been Somali immigrants in the Burlington area since i left over 6 years ago. I met a few people here and there and they were always friendly and hard working.
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Old 06-01-2012, 10:03 PM
 
Location: on a dirt road in Waitsfield,Vermont
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I lived in Maine 2001-2006, worked at LL Bean, owned a rental property in Lewsiton. They came to the US in high numbers to escape the nasty scene back home. I worked with many at Bean, most actually commuted from Lewiston. When the migration became huge the then Mayor of Lewiston made national news for controversial comments about the huge influx.

I found them to be alot like us, most were hard workers, good people in a strange land, communting from Lewiston to Freeport can be very challenging in the winter. To say they were not experienced with winter driving would be an understatement. Some were not so great.

They did receive alot of public assistance which some definately misused, which did result in resentment among some Mainers. Lewiston is a very economically depressed former milltown, it's making some progress tho.

The years I was there there was alot of big box developement, unfortunately most of that was in Auburn. I spent 3 years rehabbing my rental property, it's seemed like overnight there was a new Home Depot, BJ's and Lowes, which really helped me. For the many Targetonians, no Target tho, maybe one has been built since 2006. lol
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Old 06-02-2012, 06:24 AM
 
1,135 posts, read 2,044,527 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xz2y View Post
Interesting to read about Somalis in VT. From what I've read, it's been a mixed bag in terms of the Somali immigrants in Lewiston, ME, some good news, some not so good. What is the impression of the impact of Somali immigration in VT? I still don't understand why that particular population would move to places with harsh winters, vs places with warmer year round temperatures, which more closely match their county of origin.
It's not like they have a choice of where to live. Basically, they are refugees, often fleeing from war zones. They come through the refugee resettlement program.

Still, you bring up some good points. Once they learn the language, develop some marketable skills, etc., do they stay or head for warmer places?
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Old 06-02-2012, 07:19 AM
 
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For anyone who hasn't seen it, I recommend the film God Grew Tired of Us. What some Somalians have gone through is beyond the imaginations of many Americans. They deserve a lot of patience, and some of them are incredible people just for surviving.
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