The Iraqi Society of Oregon is an intercultural, interfaith common meeting ground of the Iraqi people, whether immigrants, refugees, or naturalized citizens in United States. The organization functions as a bridge in-between this community, and the larger community of Oregon and of U.S.A, while facilitating the development and promotion of the quality of life, values and cultures of the community members.
It’s true that the American mainstream culture has not been oriented toward meeting the cultural needs of refugees and immigrants. As more new people come to Portland, the city is making an effort to become more sensitive to the needs of new Portlanders. There is an honest desire from the larger community to reach out to new communities, especially refugees and immigrants. As newcomers to Oregon, we also must make the effort to bridge the communication gaps and build mutual understanding with the larger society.
Families need all kinds of programs and services to help integrate them into the larger American community, and bridging cultural gaps between the two communities. At the same time, we’d like to preserve the values and roots of our own culture, while building a new Multicultural Identity that balance our roots with our new home.