DES MOINES, Iowa — Few know the hardships of fleeing from war like other refugees. Those struggles inspired Bosnians in Iowa to help the refugees who just arrived in the state from Afghanistan.

The Bosniak American Association of Iowa and Des Moines Refugee Support collected food and hygiene products for Afghan refugees at the Ezan Mosque near Merle Hay Mall Sunday afternoon.

Volunteers immediately delivered the food to the refugees in need across central Iowa.

Association President Amra Klempic fled from the Bosnian War to Iowa with her family when she was a small child. She said she wants to help Afghan refugees with the obstacles her family knows too well.

“My parents have flashbacks of how it was for them when they came. They needed all the help they could get,” Klempic said. “They had a language barrier. They didn’t have jobs. They didn’t have anything.”

The group was also motivated to assist the Afghan refugees because it is Ramadan, the Muslim holy month of service.

“It’s a month of forgiving, being with family, giving to charity, and providing,” said Klempic, who is Muslim. “It’s just knowing that we’re all there for each other.”