My name is Ana Lucia Perales, I am 27 years old. I moved to the United States in 1999 when I was only 10 years old with my parents and siblings. I was able to apply for DACA in September of 2012 and was lucky enough to receive it before the end of the year. I initially came to Proyecto Inmigrante for help with my DACA application and I was invited to help as a volunteer, since I have always enjoyed helping others I began volunteering in July of 2012. When I received my EAD I was offered a position as the DACA Department Assistant, I am currently the DACA Department Coordinator. When I started to volunteer and work at Proyecto Inmigrante I was able to learn about immigration laws and practices, in December 2014 after many classes and training I received my BIA Accreditation. Since I started working for Proyecto Inmigrante I have seen over 2000 people apply for DACA and since June 2014 I have personally helped over 400 people apply for DACA.
My name is Josseline Lira, I am 28 years old and originally from Mexico City. I came to the United States in 1997 when I was only 11 years old with a tourist Visa along with my mother and younger brother. I started attending school; we struggled a lot at the beginning because we stayed in a one bedroom apartment, with my 2 uncles, 4 cousins, my aunt and my 2 grandmothers. In many occasions I would be left in charge of taking care of my cousins while everybody was working multiple shifts to make ends meet. When I was 16 I saw three of my family members detained by immigration services and removed from the country for the simple fact of working unlawfully. This was one of the most traumatic experiences of my life, seeing how my 4 cousins were left without parents. After this traumatic experience my mother was left alone raising her 2 children. After a few years I overcame all the traumatic experiences and graduated high school from Jack E. Singley Academy in 2005, one of the best high schools in Irving, Texas. While in high school I participated in the high school legal program as well as mock trial team, competing and receiving awards raised my passion for law. I wanted to attend Southern Methodist University. Unfortunately I had no legal status, no money and no job, impeding my success. I then settled with attending North Lake Community College. In 2012, I began volunteering with Proyecto Inmigrante ICS, Inc., which has allowed me to help many people. Thanks to the volunteering work I was doing with Proyecto I was able to apply for DACA. Proyecto walked me though all the process so there wouldn’t be any mistakes. Once I was approved and received my work permit, I applied for employment at Proyecto Inmigrante. I began working with Proyecto in February 2013 as a receptionist. I worked my way up from this position, to the position of Assistant to the Provisional Waiver, to Coordinator of Provisional Waiver Department, to my current position as Deputy Program Manager to the Dallas District Office. In conclusion, I am thankful and blessed for the opportunity that DACA brought into my life. Without DACA, today I would be living in the shadows, scared to attempt anything that could improve my life.
My name is Berenice Arroyos and I am from Mexico. I came to the United States in 2004 with a tourist visa when I was only 14 years old. I graduated from North Crowley High School in 2007 and received a Bachelors of Arts from The University of Texas at Arlington in Spanish and certified as a translator along with a minor in Business Administration. In 2012 I applied for DACA and was approved. DACA has allowed me to use my knowledge and education to help others. I am currently working for Proyecto Inmigrante ICS, Inc. as the Provisional Waiver Department Coordinator. I am a person of good moral character and have never been in any trouble with any law enforcement agency which allowed me to renew my DACA to continue helping others. I am currently engaged to a United States Citizen, when we get married I will be eligible to apply for an Adjustment of Status.
Aaron came to the United States in 2008, at the age of 14. He graduated from high school in 2012 and has never been in any trouble with law enforcement. Unfortunately Aaron was unable to apply for DACA because he entered the United States in 2008. DACA expansion will give Aaron the opportunity to finally apply for Deferred Action in the future.
Jose was born in Mexico, he is 17 years old. Jose entered the United States without inspection in 2008. He is currently attending high school and has never had any issues with the law. He is a person of good moral character. Jose is really looking forward to be able to apply for DACA’s expansion; DACA will give him the opportunity to help his family financially as they desperately need it.