Take Two for March 19, 2013

A flood of Iraqi refugees struggle to adjust in Orange County (Photos)

Access California Iraqis 136

Christopher Okula/KPCC

An Iraqi war refugee poses with an American flag at the Access California Services office in Anaheim, Calif.

Access California Iraqis 151

Christopher Okula/KPCC

Suad Hatem (left) and her husband, Wajeeh Alameen, moved to Anaheim from Mosul. "I was rich, and now I am poor," said Hatem.

Access California Iraqis 044

Christopher Okula/KPCC

Nahla Kayali, Founder and Executive Director of Access California Services, participates in a staff meeting held March, 7 at the community organization's offices in Anaheim, Calif. Access California Services aims to address the needs of Anaheim's Arab-American population, which includes refugees from the war in Iraq.

Access California Iraqis 237

Christopher Okula/KPCC

Iraqi war refugees gather with Access California Services staff outside their offices in Anaheim, Calif. on March 7. Access California Services aims to address the needs of Anaheim's Arab-American population, much of which consists of refugees from the war in Iraq.

Access California Iraqis 205

Christopher Okula/KPCC

Hanna Gaznakh left his job as a radiologist in Iraq to settle in Anaheim with his son and wife 2 months ago.

Access California Iraqis 222

Christopher Okula/KPCC

Yousif Hana Younan Gaznakh, an Iraqi seeking refuge from the war in his home country, displays his injured arm outside the offices of Access California Services in Anaheim, Calif. on March 7. Gaznakh's arm sustained shrapnel damage when an explosive device detonated in his vicinity while he was still living in Iraq.


Since the U.S. opened up its doors to Iraqi refugees in 2007, more have ended up in California than any other state, nearly 20,000.  An increasing number of then are arriving in Orange County and are facing big challenges once they arrive. As KPCC's Ben Bergman reports, they can face significant challenges.

RELATED: See all of KPCC's coverage on the Iraq War, 10 years later


blog comments powered by Disqus