Valerie Nezami and her husband Mani, both Houston-based attorneys, started their blog Memory Boat with stories told by adults over the age of 50. Recently, they have shifted their focus to the stories of immigrants and refugees. Nezami says her goal is to humanize the people that are often the subject of current political rhetoric.
“We’re hoping to show that immigrants and refugees have the same desires, wants and needs that everybody else does,” Nezami says.
Nezami, a first-generation Filipino-American who is married to a first-generation Iranian-American, first got the inspiration for the blog after going on a cruise with her parents and in-laws. Nezami says spending time together and trading stories gave her a new perspective on the wealth of knowledge that her parents, in-laws and others could impart on others.
“Our parents came to this country with nothing and they now have children who are both practicing attorneys,” she says. “It’s our belief that immigrants and refugees are the backbone of this country and they are what makes this country great.”
Written by Emma Whalen.