Interview for

Uday Hattem

7/26/2019

Interviewed By:

Sammy Prentice

Date Interviewed:

Audio Recording of Interview
00:00 / 26:43
Summary

Uday Hatten speaks of his experience resettling in the United States after an injury due to terrorist attack at home in Iraq, where he had worked for the U.S. military. He describes his cultural adjustment to American life with assistance from Catholic Charities, and his own connection to Arab culture and Islam despite his personal irreligion.

Transcript
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Additional Notes
Outline

Narrator: Uday Hattem

Date: July 26, 2019


Summary: Uday Hatten speaks of his experience resettling in the United States after an injury due to terrorist attack at home in Iraq, where he had worked for the U.S. military. He describes his cultural adjustment to American life with assistance from Catholic Charities, and his own connection to Arab culture and Islam despite his personal irreligion.

Topics: Family, Religion, Cultural Adjustment, Community, Immigration Process, Disability


Outline

Section 1: (0:00-10:36)

  • Immigration Process: He is from Iraq, and started working for the American military. He came to the US for treatment after terrorists shot him in the face, and then applied to live in the US and get a green card. He then got asylum after about one year.

  • Cultural Adjustment: When he came to the US, he received help from the Catholic Charity, an organization that helps refugees and asylum seekers. Catholic Charity helped him with everyday life, and helped him bring his family over to the US. Uday couldn’t work after he got shot, so his friends helped him. He now receives disability benefits.

  • Family: Uday came in 2006, and brought his family in 2009.

  • Disability: He couldn’t work after getting shot, and receives disability benefits. He spends a lot of his day at a place for people with disabilities, where he talks with Arab friends.

  • Religion: He does not practice any religion heavily, but goes with his friends to the Church when they have activities, and to the mosque with his Arabic friends. He grew up Muslim.

Section 2: (10:36-18:33)

  • Community: His son is on a soccer team, and the families of the boys on it get together and go to each others’ houses. They are from different countries and different religions, but get along well.

  • Family: His son is in college now. His mother, brother, sister, and daughters are still living in Iraq. His son grew up here and would want to continue living in the US.

  • Conditions Back Home: He says the weather is better in the US (too hot in Iraq), and there are more benefits and support (like medication, hospital, food stamps) for people in the US. Also, in his country, people are very religious, but he says there’s a different kind of harmony and affection among people of different faiths in the US.

Section 3: (18:33- 26:41)

  • Community: There are other families from Iraq around them, and they maintain a connection with them, calling and visiting. His wife doesnt speak English so has many Arab friends. Although they speak different dialects of Arabic, they are able to understand each other.

  • Family: Two of his daughters are still in Iraq. One of them has a green card but can’t leave her family behind in Iraq, as her daughter has special needs. The other was older and had already married so it was harder to bring her over to the US.

  • Cultural adjustment: Catholic Charity helped him in many ways. They helped him with his citizenship and learning English, and prepared him for his interview for citizenship.