KANSAS CITY, Missouri - Independence Avenue is known for prostitution and drugs. It earned the distinction of one of the most dangerous neighborhood in the nation according to neighborhoodscout .com . But not everyone sees despair when they travel Independence Avenue.
Hayle Abbulahi is living his dream on Independence Avenue. Abbulahi left Somalia 10 years ago to flee civil war and political unrest.
"My country is not too good now. There has been a civil war about 20 years," said Abbulahi.
Once he made it to the United States, Abbulahi immediately joined other family members in northeast Kansas City. He started school and got a job.
"I was driving bus, I was working rental car one time," said Abbulahi.
A year ago, Abbulahi opened his first business -- Baraka Market on Independence Avenue. He joined the thousands of immigrants that have fled their native land and are making their dreams of safety and security come true on the avenue. Dreams that are being realized on the same street that Neighborhoodscout.com ranked as the 23rd most dangerous neighborhoods in the nation .
"I think most of the problems happen at midnight and after midnight," said business owner Abdi Mursaam.
Mursaam opened a middle-eastern restaurant on Independence avenue 4 years ago.
He takes great pride in serving the Somalians in the metro and sharing his culture with his customers.
"We want to be part of empowerment in the community. We mingle with any community so we are part of the American dream," said Mursaam.
A dream both Mursaam and Abbulahi will proudly live out on Independence Avenue, regardless of how others rank their neighborhood.