Mn Huna: Finding Refuge in Friendship

Series produced by KXCI

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Image by: Kathleen Dreier Photography. 

Mn Huna: Finding Refuge in Friendship is a KXCI 91.3 Community Radio mini-program. The hosts are Houda from Aleppo, Syria and Melanie from Tucson, Arizona, USA.

Houda arrived as a refugee in Tucson with her parents and younger sister in July of 2016 at the age of 18. Her older sister and her sister’s husband and infant daughter are still in Jordan waiting for resettlement. Houda graduated high school in Jordan, but was placed in 9th grade in Tucson. She aspires to a career that combines her interest in journalism and political science.

Melanie moved to Tucson in 1991 when she was 20. She has an MFA in poetry from the University of Michigan and is a member of Arizona Welcomes Refugees.

Melanie & Houda met at a potluck hosted by Arizona Welcomes Refugees a few weeks after Houda’s family arrived, and have become friends. Though their friendship crosses generations, language, religion, countries, and life experiences, they have much in common: a love for writing and literature, a belief in the power of telling our stories, and a desire to make the world a better place for all people.

“Mn huna” is Arabic for “from here.” The show focuses on the experiences of people who have been resettled to Tucson as refugees and how they feel in their new country.

The theme music is “Naouetb Asibak,” a famous Syrian piece, arranged and performed by Fadi Iskander and Tamara Khachatryan (both from Aleppo) with ChamberLab in Tucson.

Translation support by Safa Najjar Merheb. Production by Rusty Boulet-Stephenson. Hide full description

Houda arrived as a refugee in Tucson with her parents and younger sister in July of 2016 at the age of 18. Her older sister and her sister’s husband and infant daughter are still in Jordan waiting for resettlement. Houda graduated high school in Jordan, but was placed in 9th grade in Tucson. She aspires to a career that combines her interest in journalism and political science. Melanie moved to Tucson in 1991 when she was 20. She has an MFA in poetry from the University of Michigan and is a member of Arizona Welcomes Refugees. Melanie & Houda met at a potluck hosted by Arizona Welcomes Refugees a few weeks after Houda’s family arrived, and have become friends. Though their friendship crosses generations, language, religion, countries, and life experiences, they have much in common:... Show full description


32 Pieces

Order by: Newest First | Oldest First
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episode 48: Dancing Our Souls Dance is central to Melanie’s life. She teaches 5Rhythms, which is a movement meditation and expressive practice wher...

  • Added: Nov 12, 2019
  • Length: 04:10
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This is the second of two episodes with Houda and her younger sister Sara revisiting stories that Melanie–and you–have heard before. But now that t...

  • Added: Oct 29, 2019
  • Length: 04:14
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The nuance of language, of idiom. The difference between being looked at–stared at, glared at–and being seen. When we look with eyes of love, we se...

  • Added: Oct 29, 2019
  • Length: 04:18
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How does a soldier start bombing his own country? This is the question Houda asked her cousin after he was discharged from mandatory military servi...

  • Added: Oct 25, 2019
  • Length: 04:10
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As Houda and Sara’s English has improved over the past three years, they’ve been able to share more of their story with Melanie–and with you. In th...

  • Added: Jul 31, 2019
  • Length: 04:27
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In the first part of our conversation with Dr. Imad Rasheed, we talked about his work at the University of Baghdad creating a post-graduate program...

  • Added: Jul 31, 2019
  • Length: 04:25
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Melanie & Rusty had the privilege of speaking with Dr. Imad Naji Rasheed recently. He was a professor at the University of Baghdad, Iraq and is a s...

  • Added: Apr 24, 2019
  • Length: 04:14
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Big news in the Mn Huna family! Houda has a brand new little brother! Ibrahim was born in late October and is the first U.S. citizen in Houda’s fam...

  • Added: Jan 31, 2019
  • Length: 04:16
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From Melanie: Sometimes I forget Houda’s history. We talk day-to-day about college and Ibrahim and politics, and I forget what she knows about the ...

  • Added: Jan 31, 2019
  • Length: 04:16
Caption: Houda, her mom and sister, and their friend Mishelle on the tram in Sabino Canyon
Episode 31 Two years ago on July 28th, Houda’s family stepped off a plane into the intense Tucson heat. They weren’t sure what was in store for the...

  • Added: Jan 31, 2019
  • Length: 04:38
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This episode, we ask that you put yourself in the shoes of another. What would you do if your city was not safe? Where would you go?

  • Added: Aug 17, 2018
  • Length: 04:19
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After we finished recording this episode over coffee at Safaa and Sedra’s apartment, Houda said that it was the most important episode we have reco...

  • Added: Aug 17, 2018
  • Length: 04:30
Caption: ouda in front of KXCI–photo by her teacher Christina
In episode 25 of Mn Huna: Finding Refuge in Friendship, Houda interviews Christina, one of the English Language Development teachers from her schoo...

  • Added: May 02, 2018
  • Length: 05:10
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Episode 26: It’s celebration time! Houda got her driver’s license! Last September, Melanie started teaching Houda how to drive–the first woman in h...

  • Added: May 02, 2018
  • Length: 05:15
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Houda recently had an opportunity to sit down and talk with Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild.

  • Added: Feb 16, 2018
  • Length: 04:56
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Dreams untangle our days. According to some theories, they give us a chance to work through in our sleep some of the threats and stresses of our da...

  • Added: Feb 12, 2018
  • Length: 05:00
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When we began Mn Huna: Finding Refuge in Friendship 20 episodes ago, Houda was focused on studying journalism and political science. But over the p...

  • Added: Jan 18, 2018
  • Length: 05:23
Caption: Melanie, Michele, and Houda at the KXCI studios.
Hijab. A Muslim woman’s headscarf has become a flashpoint for assumptions, discrimination, and controversy. And all too often the hijab is talked a...

  • Added: Dec 22, 2017
  • Length: 05:00
Caption: Houda and Farrah showing off their University of Arizona gear outside the KXCI studios. They coincidentally both came to the recording all decked out in UA colors! Like many Syrian girls, Farrah doesn’t show her face on social media.
In episode 14 Farrah returns with Houda to talk about her family’s harrowing experience in their home in Homs, Syria early in the war. After the ev...

  • Added: Aug 02, 2017
  • Length: 05:20
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In episode 13 of Mn Huna: Finding Refuge in Friendship, it’s Melanie’s turn to take you to Small Syria. To sit by the pool with a group of Syrian w...

  • Added: Aug 02, 2017
  • Length: 05:41