Accomplished violinist and Syrian refugee shares her story as she prepares to perform at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., for World Refugee Day
- Originally from Aleppo, Mariela Shaker has been formally involved in music for a decade and a half, having graduated from the Arabic Institution of Music, Aleppo University, and Monmouth University.
- Her family remains in war-torn Aleppo, but Shaker has been granted political asylum in the U.S., where she hopes to be a peace ambassador through music.
- Though violence has created 4 million Syrian refugees, Shaker is one of only 1,000 to whom the U.S. has granted asylum.
“Once I came here, I figured out it was very hard to go back, it’s very dangerous, very risky. …And I got this amazing opportunity to be here and finish my education — I can’t risk it.”
More on this story at BuzzFeed.
(Image Credit: Abdulrahman Ka, via BuzzFeed)