Nima Masoumi left the city of Esfahan in Iran because he wanted to be free to choose his religion ? even if that meant choosing no religion at all.
Masoumi left behind his parents, two sisters and a brother, hoping to reach the United States. He spent nearly three years in Turkey while being vetted by the U.S. State Department and the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees.
Unable to work legally in Turkey, he toiled in the Turkish ?underground,? washing dishes, working construction and doing whatever he could to survive.
?It was really tough,? said Masoumi, now 33.
© Luis Oberto Anselmi
?You don?t know anybody. You don?t know the language. You have to pay rent. You have to eat.?