The ARNIC Observer, a special issue for The Immigrant Heritage Month

See a special edition of The ARNIC Observer with stories from immigrants: ARNIC Observer_Vol 2_Issue 2

From this edition:

The use of well-crafted stories has become a powerful force in society, believes Jean-Michel Dissard, filmmaker and I Learn America project leader.

On May 30, June 7 and 14 Jean-Michel facilitated three workshops for the Andrew Romay New Immigrant Center (ARNIC).  Drawing inspiration from the stories from the I Learn America film, participants told their personal stories during community workshops to build bridges between themselves, their communities and their new land.

Participants learned how to structure their stories, – how to set a scene, describe their challenge and goals, and how they felt during the process.

The stories came out different: intimate, alternately humorous and alarming, and ultimately hopeful.   With the right strategy, these stories have the potential to help people – teenagers and adults alike – connect with one another and help support a new generation of engaged new Americans.

For many participants it was the first experience of narrating their personal immigration story in front of an audience.

“First, I thought I had nothing to say, but once I started telling about my journey I couldn’t stop”, said one of the workshop participants.

Film protagonists Brandon and Jennifer from the I Learn America documentary joined ARNIC members in sharing the process of making a film based on their personal stories.

After newly-minted storytellers recounted their stories with the assistance of family photographs, objects, memories, and to cheers and applause from other workshop participants, they were able to post their stories on There you can read a number of immigration stories across the years and centuries.

More information and the stories are here: 


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