TAMPA, FL (WFLA) — One year ago, the Taliban seized Afghanistan following the United States military’s withdrawal after twenty years of fighting in the embattled nation.
Since the seizure, hundreds of Afghan refugees have arrived in the Tampa Bay area. Shogofa Qasimi arrived in Florida seven months ago with her five children after fleeing Kabul.
Qasimi’s husband wasn’t allowed to leave the country during that time.
“My husband will be in trouble all of the time because he was the one working for the U.S. government,” Shogofa said.
Hopes are Qasimi’s husband will join the family in America soon as he’s recently managed to flee to Germany. She fears for the safety of family members that remain in Afghanistan.
“Always when I speak with them, there is something happening in the city like bombs, killing, I’m always worried about my mom and brothers.”
The Radiant Hands non-profit is assisting dozens of Afghan refugees in the Tampa Bay area. Qasimi shares that they found her a home, provide her with groceries, offer English classes and much more.
“It’s not easy … first of all have the challenge of adapting to the system, adapting to the language and the challenge of making enough income so they are self-sufficient,” said Ghadir Kassab, Radiant Hands Director.
Qasimi shared the decision was difficult but necessary for her family.
“For my kids’ future, I think we made a good decision to come here and so far everybody is helping,” Qasimi said.