North Side cultural center unites Rohingya refugees together

Nasir Zakaria is one of hundreds of Rohingya, a stateless Indo-Aryan people from the Rakhine State, Myanmar, who found refuge in Chicago’s North Side. After immigrating to the U.S. from Myanmar in 2013 and settling in Rogers Park, Zakaria said he could not sit idly while his people suffered from horrendous persecution.

Zakaria founded the Rohingya Cultural Center, 2740 W. Devon Ave., in April 2016 with assistance from the Zakat Foundation, a Muslim organization that provides an annual grant to pay rent, utilities and Zakaria’s salary.