My name is Ali-Reza Torabi and I am a DACA recipient; a Dreamer. I am a member of the San Diego Border Dreamers. We are putting together a benefit art show called Our Dreams Live to help fundraise in order to continue our advocacy for a Dream Act, which would give my DACA brothers and sisters and the immigrant community a chance at achieving our dreams. We are hoping to raise funds in order to continue our local advocacy as well as fly out a coalition of Border Dreamers to D.C to have our narratives heard and to influence legislators to keep the most vulnerable among us(the border towns and communities) in mind when crafting policy. That is why some proceeds from this gofundme will go towards setting up the actual benefit art show, and the rest, as well the proceeds from the art show, will go towards our continued local and national efforts to fight for our dignity, respect and rights as human beings.
I live here in San Diego and have done so for the past 22 years. I consider myself an American, but some do not see me as one because I lack a piece of paper that gives me legal validity. And this is the reality for so many of my DACA and immigrant brothers and sister. But I have always lived under the impression that being an American is more than an ethnicity or skin color. It is an ideology of inclusion. It’s an understanding that those who work hard and stay committed to themselves, to their families, their communities, and to their country will always be accepted. We were the tired, the poor and huddled masses yearning to breathe free. But under the current political atmosphere we sit at a crossroads where our lives are left in a state of uncertainty, because our exhaustion and yearning for our civil liberties were not enough.
That is why we are standing up. We are standing up for our families, for our communities, and our rights. It has never been more dire that we get our reality as a border town recognized. There is a constant fear and anxiety brought about by ICE and militarization of our borders. The fear of deportation. The lack of stability and living in a perpetual state of limbo can be and is emotionally, mentally and physically taxing. That is why we need our stories heard. Our narratives as the most vulnerable victims of increased border security need to be a part of the dialogue as legislators craft policy that directly impacts our lives. We need our realities to be acknowledged and our lives to be respected. Because it is not a piece a paper that gives us value; it is the dignity of our characters, the morality of our actions and our commitment to our communities and loved ones that give us value. We are the American Dream, and we will forever continue to fight for our dreams.
So please join us in celebrating and fundraising. Join us and be on the right side of history. We greatly appreciate your generosity, because your donations will be put towards literally changing peoples lives. You will contribute to fostering the dreams of so many people as we continue our advocacy for a Dream Act. Please share this GoFundMe with all your friends and family, and if you are able, join us Feburary 16th from 5PM-10PM at the Bread and Salt gallery in Barrio Logan for our benefit art show, Our Dreams Live. Looking forward to any and all contributions and we will hopefully see you all at the show.
Donations will be used for: food and beverages for the actual art show, and paying for the venue. supplies for local actions which includes but is not limited to, canvas, boards, posters, sounds systems. Bulk of donations will be used for purchasing tickets to Washington D.C including room and board. All purchases will be made public in order to promote transparency and trust.
- Carolyn Scofield
- Sean Smith
- Barbara Bry
- Rachel Bourland
San Diego, CA