Plight of a Refugee Family
As a refugee from war-ravaged Afghanistan, Khalid arrived in the U.S. with his family, including his three young children and his wife in mid-2016. Khalid and his family waited for three long years for their visa to be issued. It wasn’t long before Khalid discovered that life in America was not exactly what he had originally imagined it would be. Within weeks, Khalid and his family started feeling the pinch, unable to pay the bills and rent for the dwelling that housed them all.
The government assistance was just not sufficient to cover the spiking cost of living in Southern California. All his efforts to obtain a job to provide for his family went in vain. He took a low paying job lifting heavy furniture and equipment with scant pay and irregular working hours during the day and night. He had to wait to be issued work hours by his employer and sometimes would return home frustrated with an empty pocket and no work.
With the hope of reducing his rent expense, Khalid decided to terminate his costly lease with his landlord in order to move to a more economical apartment in LA County, to which he was never able to move. He paid the first month rent and security deposit for his new apartment. As he was completely new to the environment and culture, he could not communicate with clarity nor grasp the specifics of the transaction with the new landlord for the apartment in LA. The apartment complex had informed him they would require a few more weeks to complete the necessary repairs and renovation. These few unexpected weeks of renovation caused him to be without an apartment as the original apartment’s lease had ended.
This put the family in a difficult situation. Depressed but not dismayed, Khalid had to move his furniture and whatever else was left at home, to a friend’s garage and stayed at the house of another acquaintance. It was right then when he met a person at a local mosque who gave him the contact number for Uplift Charity.
He made a phone call to the Uplift Charity team and explained his plight. One of Uplift’s case managers, Mohammad, immediately visited Khalid, which was a good number of miles away from the Uplift office.
Mohammad gave Khalid an assurance that Uplift would stand by his side and help to resolve the situation and get him moving in a path of self-sufficiency. Mohammad and the Uplift team spoke to Khalid’s landlord and paid them the residual amount of rent. Thus, the lease agreement was extended. Khalid was able to have the roof back over their heads and moved all his belongings back to the apartment. It did not stop there. Sonik, another Uplift case manager, continued assisting Khalid on his path toward self-reliance by meeting their day-to-day needs. Such as food, bedding and other necessities. In addition, Uplift assisted Khalid to find a better paying job. With the assistance furnished by Uplift Charity, Khalid has climbed the ladder of self-sufficiency and can now provide for himself and his family independently. The children are attending school in order to make their own future bright.
At the end of the day, this is what Uplift Charity stands to deliver – uplift the lives of those in need, particularly refugees, with dignity and pride; help people it supports to lead self-sustainable lives and become optimistic about their future. In his own words, Khalid stated, “Uplift Charity turned me from desperate to determined, transforming me and my family’s lives for good. Because of Uplift Charity, my wife and kids are more hopeful for the future.” A smile on the faces of Khalid’s kids, as they continue their education, motivates Uplift and its team to redouble efforts for those in desperate situations. The team believes that most any issue facing a family can be solved when the family desires self-sufficiency and is willing to work hard to achieve their goals.