To an outsider, the Karims bear few emotional scars from their years as refugees.


Mohammad Karim Jamil, the father, smiles easily and chats readily. His wife, Minatt, is more circumspect, but she radiates health and well-being.


Their three young children — Jannat, 7, Hashim, 6, and Mariyam, 2 — show are bit shy in front of strangers in their home. Yet they play and gently tease each other. Like any other American children, they are immediately attracted to electronic devices and instantly delve into the dream worlds of small and large digital screens.


Yet it was only a few years ago that their parents were smuggled out of Myanmar, where, as Muslim Rohingyas, they were systematically oppressed by the majority Buddhist Burmese. He lived for years as refugees in Thailand and then in Malaysia, where she joined him. There was never any guarantee that they would leave that shadow world.


The Karims are part of the Statesman Season for Caring program, which profiles a dozen families and helps hundreds of others through local nonprofits. The Karims were nominated by Interfaith Action of Central Texas.


While Mohammad seems reluctant to ask for anything, sitting in the Karims’ bare living room, some of their needs are self-evident. Once encouraged, Minatt rolls out a list of what’s lacking.


Mohammad would like to be certified as a mechanic or welder; Minatt as a seamstress.


For their part, the children will likely aim higher. Soft-spoken Jannat likes school and the outdoors. Hashim, who studies writing, math and science, plays soccer with other boys.


Minatt wants them to become engineers, doctors or teachers.


Mohammad sums up why they left their constricted life in rural Myanmar after his family’s home was burned down by the government when he was about 15: “I want them to have a better future.


They still have a few things on their wish list including lamps, a washer and dryer, sheets, an electric fryer, area rugs, gift cards for clothing and groceries.


To find out more about the Karim family or to give an item on their wish list, contact Interfaith Action of Central Texas, 512-386-9145; interfaithtexas.org.