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African: Somolian Outreach


More and more Somolians are now moving across the state of Minnesota as we have the largest population (15,000+) than any other state in the U.S.A. When one thinks of Somolia, we (due to "media"-Hollywood) think of "Black Hawk Down"-a very "negative stereotype" of these particular people that God loves too! Yes, it may have been a "true story" (dramatized too, like many other Hollywood "based on a true story" films), but like the "media"-it doesn't represent the other "positive" side of the story. When I saw this movie, as an "ethnic-minority", I felt the film should've had some stories of how Somolians have been suffering under the "extreme political regime" that killed the #? American soldiers in this movie. It would've been "nice" to see some "positive" Somolians and their way of life that many "Westerners" haven't really experienced.

Anyways, I'll stop rambling on...I've had the opportunity to get to know a couple Somolians that's been to our college campus-UMM in the past. That is why I decided to start a site like this. I really don't know much of this particular ethnic group, but I'll add more later on....

Calling Out to Jesus

"Elijah said to the prophets of Baal, "Choose one of the bulls and prepare it first, since there are so many of you. Call on the name of your god, but do not light the fire." 26 So they took the bull given them and prepared it. Then they called on the name of Baal from morning till noon. "O Baal, answer us!" they shouted. But there was no response; no one answered. And they danced around the altar they had made. 27 At noon Elijah began to taunt them. "Shout louder!" he said. "Surely he is a god! Perhaps he is deep in thought, or busy, or traveling. Maybe he is sleeping and must be awakened." 28 So they shouted louder and slashed themselves with swords and spears, as was their custom, until their blood flowed. 29 Midday passed, and they continued their frantic prophesying until the time for the evening sacrifice. But there was no response, no one answered, no one paid attention. 30 Then Elijah said to all the people, "Come here to me." They came to him, and he repaired the altar of the LORD , which was in ruins. 31 Elijah took twelve stones, one for each of the tribes descended from Jacob, to whom the word of the LORD had come, saying, "Your name shall be Israel." 32 With the stones he built an altar in the name of the LORD , and he dug a trench around it large enough to hold two seahs [1] of seed. 33 He arranged the wood, cut the bull into pieces and laid it on the wood. Then he said to them, "Fill four large jars with water and pour it on the offering and on the wood." 34 "Do it again," he said, and they did it again. "Do it a third time," he ordered, and they did it the third time. 35 The water ran down around the altar and even filled the trench. 36 At the time of sacrifice, the prophet Elijah stepped forward and prayed: "O LORD , God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, let it be known today that you are God in Israel and that I am your servant and have done all these things at your command. 37 Answer me, O LORD , answer me, so these people will know that you, O LORD , are God, and that you are turning their hearts back again."-1 Kings 18 more....

""Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you."-Matthew 7:7

Asian Tsunami 2004 Post-Christmas Disaster

Somolian Community of Minnesota -to help with relief in Somolia, you can contact them at 612.338.5282

Reccomended Resources



  • Minnesota International Health Volunteers, a social service site

  • *referred by SPNN (St. Paul Network News-) when I was flipping channels on Saturday, January 29th 2005


    Classes at Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis @10:30a-?


  • Somalia Watch
  • Ministries

    Somserv P.O. Box 19200; Minneapolis, MN 55416-9200; 612.822.4311; Fax 612.822.4313. Contact Yaqub (e-mail address hidden for privacy)


    Shingam Restaurant

    1304 E. Lake St.
    Minneapolis, MN 55407

    Somolian Goat Meat served w/delicious rice (yellow)

    While my friends and I were eating our delicious tasty exotic meal. Some Somolians or customers were watching some NBA Sports News on this t.v. facing the table seating area.

    Restaurant Manager/Representative gives my friend Nate information on the Somolian term for what we ate..."Avi goat", Shaahh, Shaha"

    Nate and I toast to the "best tea ever tasted"


    From: "MCDC"
    Subject: MCDC News, Dec. 13, 2005
    Date: Tue, 13 Dec 2005 11:29:10 -0600

    To view this email as a web page, go to the link below, or copy and paste it into your browser's address window.

    "News Brief of the MultiCultural Development Center" December 13, 2005

    Somali Contributions in the Workplace and Beyond: Workshop Highlights and Key Points of Learning
    By Terri Ricci, MCDC News Editor

    "On November 16, the Multicultural Development Center (MCDC) presented an informational workshop about Somali culture and how Somali immigrants are successfully integrating into the workplace, as well as into the community. The workshop was co-sponsored by the Bloomington Human Rights Commission.

    Eighty attendees obtained tools and tips that they could use in their daily interactions with Somali immigrants and refugees. Omar Yousuf, workshop facilitator, gave a brief history of Somalia. A majority of Somali people came to the United States from refugee camps. The primary reason that many Somali immigrants come to Minnesota is because of the Somali community that is already established here. Minnesota also has a high number of jobs that can be done that do not require English language skills.

    Many Somali immigrants are well educated in their country, but US companies often do not recognize these degrees as immigrants are seeking jobs. Therefore, many take jobs that are lower paying and less prestigious than the ones they held in Somalia. In the past 10 years, however, Somali achievements have been great. There are many Somali-owned and operated businesses in the Minneapolis and St. Paul commercial corridor. Somalis are very appreciative and eager to learn how to own and operate businesses in Minnesota.

    Somalis in the workforce have made valuable contributions at the many companies and organizations that employ them. Testimonials given by representatives of Emerson Process Management and the YWCA of Minneapolis related how Somali employees have helped to grow their bottom line by increasing productivity. Bonnie Stanberry told of how her company, Emerson Process Management, faced an employee shortage at the beginning of the new millennia and had difficulty filling orders to clients. However, by recruiting and hiring Somali workers, her company has seen a growth in their overall profit margin in the past several years.

    At the workshop, the panelists and audience held an interactive discussion about some of the keys to retaining Somali employees. By understanding their culture and values, employers can create a work environment where Somalis feel valued, impacting both retention and productivity. Panelists at the workshop included Hussein Samatar from the African Development Center, Farah Nur from Ubah Medical Academy and Amal Abdalla from Somali Success School. Many of the issues discussed were related to Somali values that originate from their religion.

    - Nearly all Somalis are Muslims and most pray five times a day. Prayer and the rituals surrounding prayer are a religious obligation which many are not willing to compromise. Companies with large Somali employee populations have learned to be flexible and make the accommodations necessary to acknowledge this requirement and to make them feel valued.
    - Interest paid for money in a checking or savings account is not allowed for Somalis as well as other Muslims. For this reason, Somalis often do not participate in 401(k) plans offered by their employers. They also do not participate because they do not know where the money is being invested. However, if a company is willing to educate Somali employees about where their money is being invested, there is a greater chance for those employees to participate in the 401(k) program.
    - Since pork is forbidden in the Koran, nearly all Somali people do not eat it. However, for Somalis, deeper issues of contamination exist. Any food that has come into contact with pork is considered off limits. Thus, it is prohibited to eat foods that have contained pork, even though the pork is not directly consumed. This is an important fact for companies to remember who have cafeterias where pork products may come into contact with other meats, or if one orders pizza for a meeting and does not understand why Somali employees cannot just "pick off" the pepperoni.
    The bottom line with any issue, according to Yousuf, is communication. Speak to Somali co-workers and ask questions, in a respectful way, about their culture and beliefs. Get to know what they need to feel valued in the organization.

    For more information about Somali culture, contact MCDC at 952-881-6090, or email

    Somalis allege discrimination at Cold Spring poultry plant
    Oct 11th-12th KSAX
    "MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Nine Somali immigrant employees at poultry processor Gold'n Plump Poultry Inc. alleged in a federal lawsuit that they were discriminated against because of their race and their religion at the company's Cold Spring plant.
    The group alleges that the St. Cloud-based company would not permit them short breaks during the day to pray. The Muslim faith, the lawsuit says, requires five prayers a day at times defined by position of the sun.
    While the company did allow the employees to take limited numbers of restroom breaks, Khadija Jama of St. Cloud alleged she was followed into the restroom by a supervisor to make sure that she did not pray there.
    She said whites at the Cold Spring plant did not get the same treatment when they went to the restroom.
    The lawsuit also claims that the company was more likely to force Somalis than whites to work the night shift and do the least desirable jobs in the factory. Whites, the lawsuit claims, were more likely to get promotions than Somalis.
    Joe Snodgrass, attorney for the Somalis, said the case was filed in federal court in Minneapolis on Friday.
    He asked the court for both compensatory and punitive damages, and asked the judge to order the company to provide "equal employment opportunities for all applicants and employees." The lawsuit does not specify dollar figures.
    In a statement Monday, Peggy Brown, director of human resources, said Gold'n Plump respects the religious beliefs of all employees and strives "to balance their religious practices with the realities of a manufacturing line."
    Brown said Gold'n Plump has made accommodations since 2003 to its Muslim employees in an effort to provide them with opportunities to pray. She said the company announced further changes last week, before it became aware of the lawsuit, "that we believe provide yet more opportunity for observance of Muslim prayer."
    She said Gold'n Plump was under no obligation to do so, and added that "modifications of this nature affect and possibly disrupt the lives and schedules of other employees." "



  • Somali Students
  • Current Events

    Mentally Ill Somali Immigrant Fatally Shot, from Somali Land Times
    Somali Shot to Death by Deputy in Ohio from somalipress
    Somali Online: Police Shot and killed a Somali Man


  • Black Hawk Down

  • -Related Resources:
  • Black Hawk Down: A Story of Modern War by Mark Bowde, a book in
  • This controversial movie at the time of release was definitely one-sided. We the "viewers" never get the sensitive perspective of the "good-side" of the Somolian people. Instead, we just get the "negative" bad-side of the unhumane, ruthless, warlord fighters of the Somolian "extreme-Muslim-rebellous" minority group. An "ignorant" viewer of this movie who never met a Somolian may stereotype these people as all "bad". I encourage all of us to "reach-out" to these people and get to know them. One (minnesotan) donesn't have to go far to meet them, God has brought these lovely people that He has created in our very own backyards!


  • Fear for My Life By Robert Kumpel , from Nov 21, 2001 (San Diego Reader)


  • Somolian Gospel Resources, by Ethnic Harvest
  • Somolian Bible, from Multilanguage Resources
  • Stories from Somolians

  • Travel

  • Lonely Planet, travel info

  • Return to UMMAlpha's African Homepage


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