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Profile: Bhutanese Principal Adjusts to Life in Riverdale

Kharananda Rizal is one of about 400 Hindu refugees who have settled in the area.

Eighteen years after he founded a tiny school in rural Nepal—one that would later blossom to more than 1,000 students—Kharananda Rizal is adjusting to life in a slightly different setting these days: Riverdale.

Rizal is one of about 400 Bhutanese immigrants who have settled in the area, part of a wider effort to relocate tens of thousands of Hindus exiled by their government two decades ago.

Heather Caygle recently profiled Rizal's new life for DC Intersections, from his job as a cashier at a gas station to the challenge of raising three children alone to the distress of living 10,000 miles away from his wife and father.

"I still feel like I made a good decision," Rizal told Caygle. "The feeling that our children have a better future drove me."

Read the full profile here.

Pachacutec June 15, 2012 at 01:40 PM
This man might be from a country far away, but his outlook on life is SO typical of the "American dream," the way it used to be. He is out there working hard to take care of his family and make a better life for himself without any thought of being entitled to "handouts," or that he is somehow "owed" a good life by coming here. Exactly the way my own family came here, hundreds of years ago. Welcome, Mr. Rizal!

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