At a time when it can seem that there is so much that we cannot control, you can make a real difference in someone’s life now. Help bring Hesam to Canada, where he will be free to be who he is, and where LOVE IS LOVE.
With global attention on the COVID-19 pandemic, it can be easy to forget that other pressing issues such as the refugee crisis, are still ongoing. Not only that, but they've been escalated by the pandemic as borders have intensified their regulations and delayed visa processing worldwide.
For refugees, this can prove detrimental and even fatal — especially in places where hate crimes are on the rise. And it may come as a shock to North Americans to hear that more than 70 countries still criminalize same sex relationships — punishable in 12 by death. To improve their quality of life and avoid discrimination, LGBTQ+ individuals are seeking refugee status in countries where they'll be more free to authentically express themselves without the fear of hateful repercussions.
That's Why Hesam, an Iranian Refugee Stuck Passportless in Turkey, Needs Your Help
Hesam (not his real name to protect his identity) is a caring, artistic, young gay man who fled his home country of Iran and has been stuck living as a refugee in Turkey for the past five years. As one of millions of refugees in the country, Hesam's options are severely limited — it's too dangerous for him to return to Iran, and without a passport, he cannot easily seek a safer homebase. With anti-gay sentiments on the rise throughout the country, Turkey is an unsustainable substitute for the violence, intolerance and hate he fled in his previous home. No one should be discriminated against based on their sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression or HIV status. Our sponsorship group, "One Love Circle of Hope" is raising funds to bring Hesam to Canada as soon as possible, where he will be free to express himself and live life on his own terms.
Through Rainbow Refugee, We'll Help Hesam Build a New Life
That's where instrumental sponsorship programs such as Rainbow Refugee come in. In partnership with Canada's Federal Government, Rainbow Refugee helps facilitate sponsorships for LGBTQ+ asylum seekers worldwide. Through this program and with your help, One Love Circle of Hope will not only oversee Hesam's smooth arrival in Canada, but we'll also invest in his long-term success. "Sponsorship" here is much more than just monetary; it also means of providing ongoing social support, including opportunities for guidance, community and friendship building, and other forms of essential aid. Hesam has already faced immeasurable uncertainty and risks: we want to help Hesam's transition to a new language and society, so that he truly feels at home as he rebuilds his life once again.
Thank you so much for your support so far. We have met our first goal of raising $18,000 which has allowed us to start the application process, but we'll need to hit our target of at least $25,000 to ensure Hesam will have the support he needs throughout this transition. This will help support Hesam throughout the one-year application legal process. Once here, the remaining funds will aid in securing his accommodations, and providing him with clothing, food, transportation, and other forms of necessary assistance.
Please help us bring Hesam safely to Canada. Any donation will be appreciated and will make a big difference. If you can't donate, please consider sharing this with your networks. Thank you in advance for your support!