Imagine, that you are an 8-year-old lesbian girl living in Mexico.
You are bullied and taunted at school because you prefer to hang out with the boys and wear pants. At age 11, your uncle sees that you are different. He rapes you and says “I am going to teach you how to be a real woman.” At age 15, kids on the street call you a dyke and throw rocks at you. Your parents tell you it is your fault for acting that way. The police see you kissing another girl in the park and they haul you off and threaten to kill you if they ever catch you with a girl again.
You realize that if you stay in Mexico you will be killed and so you flee to the United States.
You come to live in California. Every night, you wake up shaking from nightmares in which you re-live the abuse you suffered as a child. Every morning, you live in fear that ICE will have you deported to the country where you fear death.
These are Oasis clients’ stories. Every year, we help more than 250 LGBTQ immigrants apply for asylum in the US. Once our clients have asylum, they can work and stay legally in the US, can apply for residency and eventually citizenship, and have access to medical and mental health resources that they didn’t before. Asylum means not only safety, but it opens doors to building a stable life in which our clients can break from their past and realize their full potential.
Jorli, pictured here with her son, is one of our clients who has won asylum.
In Mexico, Jorli suffered humiliation and violence for being lesbian. She fled to the US when she was 26. Her son Joseph was born here and is now in fourth grade. Before getting asylum, Jorli was always worried that she would be detained by ICE and there would be no one to pick Joseph up from school. Now that she feels safe, Jorli no longer fears going out in public with her son, and they recently realized their long-time dream of going to a Giants game together.
“Working with Oasis staff has changed my life, making me feel more safe and like I can be myself.” – Jorli
Your donation today is instrumental in protecting a life.
$2500 is the cost to Oasis for obtaining asylum and giving legal guidance to one LGBTQ immigrant fleeing violence. That is the cost of trading a future filled with fear and uncertainty, for a future filled with hope.
Thank you for your partnership in social justice for LGBTQ immigrants!
Melissa and Sam Bookin
Sol @ Sarnoff + Sarnoff
John & Celeste Dougherty
Jess and Brian
Cyd & Bob Bergren
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