The Happiest Refugee, by Anh Do

The Happiest Refugee
Anh Do's not only the happiest refugee, but also a shining example for all Australians

For those who haven’t heard of him, Anh Do is a popular Australian comedian and TV personality. Released prior to the recent political debate, The Happiest Refugee is his memoir, and in it he recounts his life’s story from the time when he was living in Vietnam during the war-torn communist era, his family’s harrowing escape from the country, and then life in Australia as an immigrant.

Do speaks very candidly about a great number of things in his past, including his relationship with his father, who was a pillar of the family until tragic circumstances led to his leaving his wife and kids; he even manages to uncover a family secret that’d been kept by his grandmother for years until asked about it in the researching of the book!

I was inspired by this amazing and touching story, and his enthusiasm, drive and attitude makes you proud to be able to call him a fellow Aussie. Granted, not all refugees are going to be as driven as he and his family were, and many will drown against the adversity of poverty that caused the Do family to flourish. But it gives the reader a deeper insight into the challenges that refugee families face, and how it’s not all  regretting the past and sucking on the teat of welfare handouts.

Along with Go Back To Where You Came From, the recent SBS documentary, The Happiest Refugee should be compulsory reading for anyone who’s interested in gaining insight into the plight of refugees.

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