“No matter how tough my past was, in America, I hope to start again”

“No matter how tough my past was, in America, I hope to start again”

“My grandma always tried to protect me, but when it comes to gangs, you can rarely, if ever, escape. I remember the gangs threatening grandma at her house, telling her that ‘next time, we are going to take your granddaughter (me), we will rape her, and then kill her. You will never see her again.’ I knew this had to do with my dad, who abandoned me to join the gangs when I was just three years old. That day my grandma was threatened, my cousin and I decided to take whatever we could carry and leave the country.”

Samantha is only 14 years old and crossed almost half of the continent with her 17 year old cousin escaping from an eminent and violent destiny. She was abused, abandoned, and neglected by her father who was also a part of the gangs in Central America. Her cousin was also threatened with death, due to his refusal to join the gangs. After many challenges and three months of detention at the border, they were allowed entry to the U.S. Thanks to you, JAMLAC’s team was able to help Samantha reunite with her mom, who was already living in Denver, and helped her gain full custody of Samantha and her cousin. Now, JAMLAC is applying for a special immigrant juvenile visa for Samantha and her cousin to safely remain in the U.S. 

“Most juveniles flee without being able to give much thought to anything other than staying alive. As a result, they have little to no evidence beyond their word, and must look for evidence by contacting individuals back in their home countries, which is expensive, time-consuming and can even be dangerous.” – The Center for Victims for Torture

For many of us, our daily decisions range from choosing what to eat for dinner to choosing a podcast for the day. But, for many unprivileged people like Samantha, daily decisions are truly about life or death. Thankfully, this time JAMLAC was able to help. And it was you, as a supporter, who truly changed Samantha’s life forever. JAMLAC is a bridge between your humble generosity and the positive change in this world. Thank you for supporting the program. Thank you for moving this world forward!