in north america

The region of Tibet is in the Himalayas and has been governed by China since 1950. At that time, many Tibetans were displaced to nearby countries such as Nepal and India. They formed new communities, including relocating their governmental headquarters to Dharamshala in India, but retain a strong allegiance to their homeland and their spiritual and political leader, the Dalai Lama. Their immigration to North America began small in the 70’s in Canada when the Dalai Lama appealed for Tibetans to be able to immigrate. Later, in the 1990’s, the Dalai Lama made a new appeal and several thousand Tibetans were allowed to immigrate into Toronto and New York City. Many of these immigrants came from Nepal and India where they were already refugees. As a result, Tibetans in North America have been described as “twice removed”. In a study done by the Central Tibetan Administration, 26,594 Tibetans were counted as living in the United States and 9,504 in Canada. New York, Toronto, and Minneapolis have the largest concentrations.

Historically, the Tibetans have been a nomadic people following their herds of animals. The region of Tibet is the highest elevation on earth, containing Mt. Everest. The staple diet of the Tibetan region is roasted barley, yak meat, and butter tea. They may be found celebrating the birthday of the Dalai Lama every year. There are Tibetan societies in the cities where they live, and some of these exist to promote Tibetan independence for the homeland. Tibetans stay in close communication with their family in Tibet, India, and Nepal and a large minority take frequent trips to Dharamshala or other Tibetan communities in South Asia.

Religious Life

Tibetans are almost exclusively Buddhist, and very few have become followers of Christ. They will tell you that they practice Tibetan Buddhism, which is a form of Mahayana Buddhism. Tibetan Buddhism involves tantric practices such as deity yoga and the Six Dharmas of Naropa. One cannot describe the beliefs of a Tibetan Buddhist without also including the Dalai Lama. He is both the political and spiritual leader of Tibet. The Dalai Lama has received a Nobel Peace Prize for advocating non-violent policies in the mist of facing aggression from China. The Dalai Lama retired from political affairs in 2011 to devote himself to spiritual affairs.

These are the TIBETAN communities in North America most in need of gospel witness

People GroupMetropolitan AreaPopulation SizeConcentrated AreaPriority Score
AfghanSan Francisco31,642Fremont69
AfghanNew York9,631Flushing (Queens)49
AfghanLos Angeles14,767Irvine57
AfghanMontreal9,215Saint-Martin (Laval)60
AfghanVancouver7,500West Minster51
AfghanSacramento19,783Elk Grove69
AfghanWashington D.C.29,696Springfield73
Afghan Hindu/SikhNew York6,000Hicksville (Long Island)86
Algerian ArabMontreal54,635Little Maghreb71
BambaraNew York5,000Harlem69
BangladeshiToronto23,400Danforth Village46
BangladeshiNew York118,166Jamaica (Queens)43
BangladeshiWashington D.C.23,908York Town49
BangladeshiLos Angeles7,362Little Bangladesh46
BangladeshiMontreal6,920Parc Extension48
Belzer JewishNew York12,518Borough Park (Brooklyn)86
Bobover JewishNew York23,509Borough Park (Brooklyn)90
BosniakSt. Louis50,000Mehlville77
BosniakUtica5,000Bleecker St.60
BosniakDes Moines10,000Merle Hay63
BosniakGrand Rapids10,000Kentwood63
BosniakNew York10,000Astoria (Queens)63
BosniakBowling Green5,000Morgantown Road60
Breslov JewishNew York5,000Boro Park86
Bukharan JewishNew York60,000Rego Park (Queens)74
Chabad Lubavitch JewishNew York27,103Crown Heights (Brooklyn)91
Egyptian ArabLos Angeles23,765Anaheim40
Egyptian ArabMontreal8,733Saint-Laurent27
Egyptian ArabToronto36,340Mississauga45
Egyptian ArabNew York47,647Astoria (Queens)46
Egyptian ArabDallas Fort Worth5,621Richardson30
Egyptian ArabChicago8,276Hickory Hills25
Egyptian ArabNashville7,308South Nashville31
Egyptian ArabRiverside6,564San Bernardino30
Egyptian ArabWashington D.C.10,911Lanier Heights24
Egyptian ArabPhiladelphia5,249Center City33
Fouta TooroNew York5,000Bed-Stuy (Brooklyn)78
Fulbe FutaNew York5,000Morrisania (Bronx77
Gerer JewishNew York8,791Borough Park84
Gorsky-Kavkazi JewishNew York10,000Kensington (Brooklyn)89
GujaratiNew York138,735Edison (NJ)70
GujaratiSan Francisco39,116Fremont52
GujaratiLos Angeles40,328Woodbury45
GujaratiAtlanta23,816Big Creek52
GujaratiHouston32,736Sugar Land 62
GujaratiMontreal7,830Dollard-Des Ormeaux56
GujaratiBoston17,364Town of Acton59
GujaratiCharlotte7,206Mallard Creek46
GujaratiEdmonton7,510Strathcona Industrial Park52
GujaratiBaltimore8,615Ellicott city44
GujaratiAustin8,364Walsh Creek44
GujaratiDallas Fort Worth32,132Plano48
GujaratiRiverside6,579Sierra del Oro50
GujaratiSan Diego7,746Miramar49
GujaratiPhoenix10,087Chandler-Kirby Estates47
GujaratiSan Jose34,825San Jose59
GujaratiSacramento9,972North Natomas50
GujaratiMinneapolis8,630Eden Prairie49
GujaratiColumbus, OH5,605Polaris37
GujaratiHartford5,297Rocky Hill49
GujaratiWashington D.C.34,109Calverton61
Gujarati Vancouver10,685South Vancouver58
Indian HindiNew York249,722Jersey City, Edison46
Indian HindiToronto171,095Etobicoke45
Indian HindiSan Francisco70,473Fremont40
Indian HindiChicago80,975Georgetown44
Indian HindiVancouver68,905South Vancouver39
Indian HindiHouston58,925Sugar Land38
Indian HindiLos Angeles72,590Artesia37
Indian HindiSacramento20,322Valley Hi/North Laguna44
Indian HindiBoston31,256Town of Acton54
Indian HindiMontreal18,163Parc Extension56
Indian HindiSeattle33,699Bellevue31
Indian HindiRaleigh12,038Morrisville45
Indian HindiDallas Fort Worth57,838Breckinridge Farms32
Indian HindiOttawa10,595Napean/Westboro56
Indian HindiEdmonton27,470SE Edmonton51
Indian HindiCharlotte12,972Mecklenburg41
Indian HindiPhoenix18,156Chandler-Kirby Estates55
Indian HindiMinneapolis15,533Edina50
Indian HindiAustin15,055Walsh Creek47
Indian HindiSan Diego13,942Miramar50
Indian HindiWinnipeg11,300Colony (Little India)53
Indian HindiCincinnati7,623Clifton Heights47
Indian HindiOrlando12,244Williamsburg 50
Indian HindiKitchener6,585West Mount36
Indian HindiCleveland6,268Glenwillow48
Indian HindiDenver8,191Sedalia52
Indian HindiPortland9,021Rockcreek44
Indian HindiTampa12,236Brandon52
Indian HindiMiami20,009Plantation55
Indian HindiBridgeport7,331Stamford53
Indian HindiBaltimore15,507Ellicott city35
Indian HindiSan Jose62,685San Jose50
Indian HindiHartford9,535Rocky Hill49
Indian HindiPittsburgh6,612Marshall Township48
Indian HindiRichmond6,588Three Chopt31
Indian HindiSt.Louis7,112Ballwin44
Indian HindiIndianapolis7,366Wayne Township51
Indian HindiMilwaukee5,679Brookfield58
Indian HindiColumbus, OH10,090Polaris36
Indian Hindi Atlanta42,868Big Creek36
Indian Hindi Alberta9,330Calgary 36
Indian Hindi Philadelphia43,694Eaglesville (Center City)57
Indian Hindi Detroit36,113Troy 56
Indian Hindi Washington D.C.61,396Ellicott city46
Indian Hindi Riverside11,842Sierra del Oro51
Indonesian MuslimLos Angeles7,500San Bernardino29
Iraqi ArabAtlanta5,988Clarkston38
Iraqi ArabAustin6,161Pflugerville43
Iraqi ArabBuffalo7,305North Park52
Iraqi ArabHouston11,914Mid-West41
Iraqi ArabSacramento5,173Arden-Arcade38
Iraqi ArabNew York5,520Astoria (Queens)47
Iraqi Arab Detroit68,626East Dearborn57
Iraqi Arab Chicago17,491Bridgeview53
Iraqi Arab Toronto29,045Vaughan47
Iraqi Arab San Diego16,591El Cajon56
Iraqi Arab Dallas Fort Worth22,987Richardson42
Iraqi Arab Phoenix12,758Jefferson at Steele Indian42
Iraqi Arab Seattle7,667South Seattle39
Iraqi Arab Washington D.C.7,238Lanier Heights42
Iraqi ArabVancouver5,205Surrey40
Israeli Sabra JewishToronto7,625North York49
Israeli Sabra JewishMiami12,299Plantation54
Israeli Sabra JewishNew York36,720Kew Gardens Hills (Queens)66
Israeli Sabra JewishChicago5,148Skokie47
Israeli Sabra JewishSan Francisco9,384Sunnyvale51
Israeli Sabra JewishLos Angeles18,885Pico Robertson & Fairfax60
Jordanian Arab MuslimNew York5,543Paterson39
Jordanian Arab MuslimChicago7,122Bridgeview40
JulaNew York5,000Harlem69
Kabyle BerberMontreal31,532Longue-Pointe50
KazakhNew York5,460Brighton Beach (Brooklyn)50
Kosovar AlbanianNew York40,000Pelham Parkway (Bronx)64
KurdsNashville15,000Elysian Fields54
Lebanese Arab MuslimDetroit33,099East Dearborn42
Lebanese Arab MuslimNew York15,759Paterson33
Lebanese Arab MuslimToronto29,750Mississauga34
Lebanese Arab MuslimLos Angeles18,893Monterey Park35
Lebanese Arab MuslimBoston12,694Somerville34
Lebanese Arab MuslimDallas Fort Worth6,440Richardson27
Lebanese Arab MuslimHouston6,622Mid West27
Lebanese Arab MuslimMiami8,971Upper Eastside47
Lebanese Arab MuslimMontreal10,731Saint-Laurent34
Lebanese Arab MuslimWashington D.C.6,904Woodley Park 33
MandinkaNew York5,000Highbridge (Bronx)81
ManinkaNew York5,000Concourse (Bronx)76
Persian Jewish (Mashadi)New York5,000Great Neck (Long Island)88
Moroccan ArabBoston10,968East Boston45
Moroccan ArabLos Angeles7,272Central LA-Beverly Wood44
Moroccan ArabNew York33,693Astoria (Queens)56
Moroccan Arab Chicago5,961Bridgeview44
Moroccan ArabDetroit6,660Hamtramck37
Moroccan Arab Miami9,935Upper Eastside47
Moroccan Arab Philadelphia9,409Center City41
Moroccan Arab Washington D.C.15,634Brockwood49
Moroccan Arab Montreal77,450Little Maghreb74
Moroccan JewishToronto5,000North York83
Moroccan JewishMontreal10,000Hampstead64
PakistaniToronto128,845East York51
PakistaniNew York105,236Midwood (Brooklyn)50
PakistaniDallas Fort Worth23,450Breckinridge Farms45
PakistaniSan Francisco12,654Diamond Heights39
PakistaniWashington D.C.42,941Fairfax couty, Mt. Vernon46
PakistaniLos Angeles23,831Central LA35
PakistaniAlberta19,500Calgary (castleridge)45
PakistaniVancouver14,610Burnaby and Surrey48
PakistaniMontreal15,920Parc Extension48
PakistaniEdmonton11,805Blue Quill37
PakistaniMiami8,054Miramar-Pimebrook Pines49
PakistaniBaltimore11,275Ellicott City29
PakistaniOrlando5,396Florida Center48
PakistaniSan Jose5,890Milipitas44
Pakistani Ottawa7,175Sandy Hill46
Pakistani Detroit10,101Canton36
Palestinian Arab MuslimNew York16,222South Paterson (NJ)50
Palestinian Arab MuslimToronto15,555Mississauga50
Palestinian Arab MuslimChicago24,832Chicago Lawn52
Palestinian Arab MuslimDallas Fort Worth5,052Richardson38
Palestinian Arab MuslimDetroit7,584Livonia36
Palestinian Arab MuslimLos Angeles12,064Anaheim44
Palestinian Arab MuslimSan Francisco7,609Soma42
Palestinian Arab MuslimWashington D.C.6,078Lanier Heights38
PersianToronto97,110North York41
PersianLos Angeles127,713Tehrangeles43
PersianNew York30,520Great Neck (Long Island)33
PersianSan Francisco50,170San Mateo25
PersianVancouver44,355West Vancouver23
PersianSan Diego17,282La Jolla20
PersianMontreal23,410Notre Dame de Grâce24
PersianHouston14,742Woodlake/Briar Meadow21
PersianDallas Fort Worth13,939Plano21
PersianPortland6,672Pearl District22
Persian Washington D.C.30,426Tysons Corner26
Persian Sacramento8,100El Dorado Hills17
Punjabi SikhAtlanta6,187Norcross55
Punjabi SikhDallas Fort Worth5,815Irving50
Punjabi SikhHouston8,184Willowbrook51
Punjabi SikhNew York80,000Richmond Hill (Queens)69
Punjabi SikhToronto159,910Brampton75
Punjabi SikhVancouver155,945Surrey65
Punjabi SikhYuba City, CA15,000South Yuba City57
Punjabi SikhLos Angeles30,000Buena Park59
Punjabi SikhChicago11,247West Ridge58
Punjabi SikhDetroit10,000Canton56
Punjabi SikhIndianapolis10,000McCordsville55
Punjabi SikhPhiladelphia5,360Millbourne55
Punjabi SikhWashington D.C.8,618Fairfax47
Punjabi SikhSeattle20,000Kent67
Punjabi SikhEdmonton20,425Southeast Edmonton64
Punjabi SikhSan Francisco40,000Fremont71
Punjabi SikhWinnipeg9,885The Maples43
Punjabi SikhAbbotsford28,235Clearbrook49
Punjabi SikhHamilton5,920Grayside50
Punjabi SikhCalgary30,420Castleridge59
Punjabi SikhMontreal9,205Parc Extension57
Pupa JewishNew York8,825Williamsburg (Brooklyn)90
Sanzer JewishNew York7,006Borough Park88
Satmar JewishNew York156,744Williamsburg (Brooklyn)99
Skver JewishNew York17,678New Square (Rockland Cty)91
SomaliCalgary6,607Northeast Calgary63
SomaliColumbus, OH45,000Northland79
SomaliNashville5,000Southeast Nashville61
Somali Ottawa25,650Ridgemont75
Somali San Diego15,000El Cerrito72
Somali BantuToronto6,000Etobicoke86
Somali BantuColumbus, OH5,000West side85
SoninkeNew York15,000Highbridge (Bronx)85
Sri Lankan SinhaleseToronto15,000Scarborough37
Sri Lankan SinhaleseNew York7,500Tompkinsville (SI)32
Syrian Arab MuslimNew York11,502Bay Ridge (Brooklyn)37
Syrian Arab MuslimMontreal7,275Ahuntsic-Cartierville38
Syrian Arab MuslimLos Angeles7,999Anaheim36
Syrian JewishNew York75,000Ocean Parkway (Brooklyn)96
Persian Jewish (Tehrani)Los Angeles40,000Beverly Hills88
Persian Jewish (Tehrani)New York20,000Great Neck (Long Island)86
ThaiNew York14,300Elmhurst (Queens)22
ThaiLos Angeles34,615East Hollywood (Thai Town)21
ThaiWashington D.C.12,811Shaw28
ThaiSan Francisco9,785Civic Center29
ThaiSeattle9,343University District24
ThaiChicago7,837Albany Park29
ThaiDallas Fort Worth8,154City Place19
ThaiLas Vegas8,018Paradise25
TibetanNew York13,000Jackson Heights (Queens)77
TibetanToronto8,000West Parkdale74
TurkAtlanta5,055Sandy Springs56
TurkBoston6,462North Brookline57
TurkChicago7,361Mount Prospect56
TurkMiami8,102Miami Beach56
TurkNew York41,367South Paterson (NJ)57
TurkHouston5,324Memorial Park56
TurkPhiladelphia7,179Riverside (NJ)57
TurkSan Francisco12,810Sunnyvale59
TurkWashington D.C.12,918Fairfax 59
TurkLos Angeles11,500Culver City58
UzbekNew York28,506Brighton Beach (Brooklyn)37
Vizhnitz JewishNew York18,382Kaser (Rockland Cty)90
WolofNew York20,000Harlem81
Yemeni ArabNew York20,000Bay Ridge (Brooklyn)72
Yemeni ArabDetroit25,000Hamtramck72
Yemeni ArabSan Francisco10,000Oakland62
Yeshivish JewishChicago5,894West Rogers Park68
Yeshivish JewishMiami10,726North Miami Beach72
Yeshivish JewishWashington D.C.9,921Glen (Baltimore)70
Yeshivish JewishToronto16,000York75
Yeshivish JewishNew York120,000Lakewood (NJ)91
Yeshivish JewishLos Angeles13,600Hancock Park74
Tunisian ArabMontreal17,645Little Maghreb74
Figures for matrix score formula (don't delete)
Helpful resources for sharing Jesus with Tibetans
Bible.isAudio and written Bible in Tibetan (New Tibetan Version).bible.is-thumbnail
Creation to ChristCreation to Christ video in Central Tibetan. movie-background-thumbnail
PhimEvangelistic video called "Phim," in Central Tibetan.movie-background-thumbnail
JESUS FilmJESUS film video in Tibetan, Lhasa.Jesus-film-thumbnail
Interested in reaching Tibetans or have another inquiry? Contact us!

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    100,000 Yemenis

    Statistics Canada 2016 counted 6,645 people whose ethnic origin was Yemeni. The 2019 American Community Survey counted 58,627 people born in Yemen now living in the United States. Counting U.S.-born children and typical undercounts of Arabs in the census, it is safe to assume there are at least 100,000 Yemenis in North America. The Wikipedia article on Yemeni Americans claims "there are an estimated 100,000-200,000 Yemenis living in the United States as of 2018,” but no source is given for that statistic.

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    350,000 Bosniaks

    The Congress of Bosniaks of North America estimate 300,000 Bosniaks live in the United States and 50,000 in Canada.

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    300,000 Somalis

    The America Community Survey 2019 estimated 182,951 people reporting Somali ancestry in the United States. Statistics Canada 2016 estimated 62,500 people with Somali ethnic origin in Canada. Census figures tend to undercount groups like Somalis who are suspicious of government authorities and census takers. Community estimates of Somalis in the Greater Toronto and Edmonton areas alone number 100,000. An estimated 300,000 Somalis in North America is a conservative estimate, and their population number could be much higher.

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    670,000 to 1,000,000 Sikhs

    In the 2011 Statstics Canada census, 454,965 Sikhs were estimated to live in Canada. The United States does not count religious affiliation in its census, and the language of Punjabi is also spoken by Hindus and Muslims which makes "language spoken at home" a difficult category for measuring Sikhs. However, the 2012 Pew Religious Survey indicates 5% of Indian Americans are Sikh. The 2019 American Community Survey estimated 4,240,466 Asian Indians living in the United States, and 5% of that population equals 212,023. The Sikh America Coalition, however, estimates 500,000 Sikhs living in the United States. Therefore, low estimates of Sikhs in North America are around 670,000 people and high estimates are around one million.

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    400,000 Afghans

    The diversity of the people groups who identify as Afghans contributes to the difficulty of using census information to estimate the number of Afghans in North America. The American Community Survey 2019 counted 156,434 people in the United States with "Afghan" ancestry. However, some Afghans would identify their ancestry as Tajik, Pashtun, and so forth. Statistics Canada 2016 counted 83,995 people with Ethnic Origin as Afghan, 4,810 as Pashtun, 2,905 as Tajik, and 1,515 as Hazara. So, adding those number together gives a good idea of a low estimate of the number of Afghans in Canada. Allied Media Corporation, who has worked extensively with the Afghan American Community, estimates 300,000 Afghans live in the United States. With adding Canada's number, a reasonable estimate of Afghans in North America is 400,000 people.

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