Although they are thousands of miles and an ocean away from their home country, Algerians have found familiar comforts in North Texas, namely Wylie.
Situated in North Africa along the Mediterranean Sea, Algeria has a population of around 44.2 million people as of 2022 and is roughly the size of Texas. Most of the country are Sunni Muslims and the two primary languages of the country are Arabic and French.
Noori Hadi, a Wylie resident and Algerian, said while there are not many Algerian families living in Wylie, there are around 500 that live in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. Throughout the year, they hold gatherings to honor their Algerian heritage and traditions, including the observance of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.
“The benefits of finding other Algerians in the community to talk and gather is [to] bridge gaps between the community and share experiences,” Hadi said. “[It also provides] a sense of belonging and support, which are benefits [that] can be all across community events.”
Throughout a year, Hadi said the Algerian community gathers around four or five times a year across North Texas. Oftentimes, these gatherings will have traditional clothing, food or drink to honor the heritage of the North African community.
Hadi said the gatherings are a way to remember where they come from, even though they are far away from their original homes. It also helps them remember that there are others like them in North Texas.
“[These gatherings] Bring people together and remind them that there are many others who share the same values,” Hadi said.
For the full story, see the Dec. 7 issue of The Wylie News.