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Har Be Bar

Har Be Bar wearing Thanaka, a traditional Burmese cosmetic.

Har Be Bar (nicknamed “Harbe” by family and friends) is the daughter of Ya He Ma and Ka Ma Din. She was born in Burma. She does not remember much of her time there. However, she remembers hiding in a cellar when soldiers searched their village. She said, "If I see a soldier, I had to run. If I see police, I have to run."

Har Be Bar and her family left Burma when she was five years old to travel to a refugee camp in Thailand. She and her family raised chickens, harvested bananas, and grew vegetables (tomatoes, potatoes, and chili peppers) in a garden close to their home.

When she was twelve, Har Be Bar was told that she and her family would be moving to the United States. “I was very excited,” she said, “and very happy, and scared, too.” She remembers having to fill out all the paperwork, all while preparing to leave the country and that they didn’t know where they would be going once they got to the States. They were eventually assigned to Salt Lake City, Utah.

The Lonely Rose, painting by Har Be Bar

A painting done by Har Be Bar while a senior in high school. The Burmese text in the upper-right reads "A Lonely Rose"--an expression of her feelings about herself during this period.

After about six months in Salt Lake, Har Be Bar and her family moved up to Logan. Har Be Bar attends school at Utah State University, and hopes to become a math teacher.

Har Be Bar wants people to know that, if you ever see a Burmese person on the street, you can feel free to go up and talk to them. “We are friendly, so don’t be afraid,” she says. In our own experience, this is more than true: Har Be Bar and her family are more than friendly, and would welcome the opportunity to talk!

Har Be Bar talks about what she is most proud of.

Har Be Bar talks about some of the challenges living in the US.

Har Be Bar talks about celebrating holidays in the refugee camp.