Debra Moffitt
Archived Show
How to Help Your Heart Feel at Home When You're an Immigrant or Expat
Tuesday, February 9, 2016
Nilsy Rapalo grew up in Columbia. She moved to San Francisco and now lives in South Carolina. Despite many years of living in the U.S., she still feels strong roots and attachments to her home country. Nilsy, a psychologist, has struggled with how to respect her roots and also find her path in America. We'll explore some of the challenges facing expats and immigrants. 1) How can one overcome a sense of isolation? 2) How can we develop a sense of community in a place where we feel we have no roots? 3) Do we have to "fit in" or can we be ourselves? 4) Are there ways to ease the challenges of moving to a new country?

Nilsy works with immigrants and Hispanics in the Charleston, SC, community to help them find their place and feel at home. Her work was recently rewarded with a Martin Luther King Jr. Award for community service. She will share some of the ideas from her book and her practice on ways to find your roots and stay connected to what makes your soul sing even if your heart longs for the places where you grew up. Find out more about Nilsy's work and book here. By the way in researching this article/show, I discovered there's a interesting difference between "expat" and "immigrant". The U.K.'s Guardian newspaper has some interesting reflections on this.