On the Importance of DACA: Silvia’s Story

Silvia came to the United States from Bolivia in 2006 with her aunt and sister. She was eligible for the DACA program and utilized her work permit to create a better future for her family. She is currently working as a pre-k teacher at a child center while also continuing her studies. Silvia hopes to one day become a teacher at a public school and show students how to love learning. For Silvia, DACA has helped her go to college, get a job, and live on her own. She explained, “DACA has helped me get a better future, and I need this program because it gives me the protection to work and be safe here.” Like many other immigrants, Silvia said she is also anxiously waiting for the Supreme Court’s decision on the constitutionality of DACA and whether this program will be discontinued or not. She explained she is uncertain about what will happen to her future but hopes that her son will get the same opportunities she had when she first came to the United States. Silvia explained, “When I was back in my country, we barely had bread to eat and clothes to wear. We lived in a very poor area of the country. Over here, I was able to afford a two-bedroom apartment and help my family.” She said DACA has changed her life in a positive way and she thanks Just Neighbors for helping her renew her DACA papers in the past. Despite the anticipation of the Supreme Court’s ruling, Silvia said she hopes for the best for her and her family.

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The mission of Just Neighbors is to provide immigration legal services to low-income immigrants and refugees in Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Virginia, especially those who are most vulnerable. We also seek to foster enriching experiences that enhance awareness and mutual understanding among our clients, volunteers, staff and community.

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