I’ve reported on the meatpacking town of Lexington, NE a bunch of times. Here is an AP story I posted on from way back in 2007 when the Somalis first began arriving in Lexington.
Rural America unprepared in 2007!
One problem landlords faced when African refugees first began flowing into Lexington: burning wood on top of indoor stovetops to cook food.
“They may not have seen an automobile or a telephone,” said Christine Kutschkau, the state coordinator for refugee resettlement. “Some of our refugees come from very primitive areas.”
The rapid change in towns like Lexington has been a shock to the system of services immigrants rely on, such as health care. Kutschkau said there has been a shortage of medicine for an influx of refugees who needed to be treated for tuberculosis.
“They really are unprepared for these people,” Kutschkau said.
Here is another story from Lexington the “welcoming” city.
Here, in 2009, we learn about the new Somali Community Center.
Now here is an update story from Friday. Earlier reports were unable to put a number on how many Somalis live in Lexington, but his one says 2,200. The headline says they need spiritual assistance, but it sounds like they need money:
LEXINGTON – Four or five years ago, the numbers of Somali residents in Lexington began to grow as work opportunities at Tyson Fresh Meats attracted resettled refugee victims with employment.
The Somali Community Center says nearly 2,200 Somali natives have become Lexingtonites, and are in dire need of language services in order to integrate and be a productive and safe part of the Lexington community.
Read the whole story.
The article goes on to discuss the needs of the Somali Community Center there, but I must say I did a little searching and can’t find anything official about this organization, so I can’t say if they have properly incorporated or not. I wonder if they are a spin-off of Mohamed Rage’s (CAIR-friendly) ECBO in Omaha?
Somali community centers everywhere!
I did find this list of Somali Community Centers throughout the United States and they appear to be on it, or at least one Somali Center in Lexington is on it.
Nebraska lecture series on Somali child welfare/abuse taught in Lexington.
From University of Nebraska-Lincoln (Through the eyes of a child):
Several Nebraska communities have seen a surge in population of Somali families and a number of these communities have seen rising numbers of Somali children and families in the child welfare system. This training provides an overview of cultural, language, and familial issues as well as practical guidance regarding a more culturally sensitive and effective response to the problem of child abuse/neglect in this new immigrant community. Local and state resources from the Somali community were invited to participate in the training and to develop or strengthen linkages that assist families in the child welfare system.
Squishy language but we should give them credit for tackling the problem.
I wonder if Indiana has had any such taxpayer funded courses?
Readers, consider Khadra’s warning.