Khaled Hosseini tells Nalene’s Story
Afghan-American writer Khaled Hosseini meets Nalene and is struck by her tremendous reserves of confidence and self-awareness.
Nalene, 21, is mother of three small girls, including 18-month-old twins; her husband was injured in a mortar attack on their home and is unable to work. In Syria she ran a successful beauty salon. Here at Kawergosk, she has set up a salon in a small tent in the camp. It’s a challenging environment but she takes pride in the quality of her work and her professionalism. It gives her purpose, direction and a sense of dignity.
“I put plastic on the floor when I do a hair dye in case drops stain the carpet,” she says, smiling. “People might say why bother, we’re in a refugee camp. But it matters. I work hard to support my family but it’s good for my mental well-being too.”
Text by K. Hosseini for The Independent on Sunday/6th April 2014.
Listen to Nalene’s Story: