I have never asked for monetary contributions of any kind for anything like this before, but I know that I am blessed with an incredibly loving and supportive community who has told me and shown me time and time again that they've got my back.
My brother is turning 21 on May 24th. When he turns 21, both of my parents will be eligible to apply for family-based lawful permanent residence (a green card) through him. All of our legal fees are taken care of and the last expenses that we have are 1) the government's filing fees and 2) the costs of obtaining a required medical examination.
Here is a breakdown of these expenses:
-Form I-130 (to certify the family relationship between my brother and my parents): $535.00 x 2 = $1,070
-Form I-485 (the acutal application for permanent residence): $1,225.00 x 2 = $2,450
-Form I-693 (required medical examination): $275.00 x 2 = $550
$1,070 + $2,450 + $550 = $4,070
GoFundMe's payment processors take 2.9% off the top. $4,070 x 1.029 = 4,188.03. I decided to make my fundraising goal a flat $4, 200.
I know that the above may seem really complicated -- in reality, nothing in our immigration system is simple. In order to immigrate to the United States, there are tons of forms, interviews, and other steps that have to be taken. My parents and I came to the U.S. from the Philippines almost 24 years ago and, because of some complications, we have been unable to receive legal status in this country (see more here).
This is it! We've come so long and so far in this country and my parents finally get a chance to call this place home (if only on paper). As for me, we'll have to wait and see what Congress does for dreamers given the end of the DACA program.
My parents were the original dreamers. They came to this country in search of better opportunities for their children and to build a family as a newlyweds. When they came, they sacrificed so much. They missed birthday parties, births, and deaths. Their sacrifice is unimaginable.
My father, who used to be a physical therapist, now works in a warehouse. My mother, a trained paralegal, works at two restaurants and cleans houses and hotel rooms as much as she can. Both hardly make a living wage. Both of them are college educated and would be incredible assets to American society if they were able to get their green cards.
Any donation to our cause, big or small, is appreciated. If or when you decide to give, if you're comfortable, please leave your address in the notes section of your donation so that I can send you a small token of appreciation. If you give, you will alleviate us of a major financial stressor that has accompanied a long and arduous journey and stay in the U.S.
All donations will be kept in a secure savings account until it is time to use the funds for this purpose alone.
If you have any questions, please shoot me a message here and I'd be happy to give you my phone number or email address.