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10 Year Old Organizes Letter Writing Campaign for Detained Migrant Children

 

Meet Leah Sanles Wilson, a 10 year old from Miami, Florida who is proving to be one of the country’s youngest and most relentless immigration advocates.

Despite having been born in the United States, Leah is not stranger to the struggles that undocumented immigrants endure on daily basis.

Leah is the youngest daughter of Bertha Sanles Wilson, an undocumented mother who fled Nicaragua fifteen years ago in search of a better life and opportunity for her older daughter Christell, who is a beneficiary of President Obama’s DACA program.

“Leah is a super activist,” her mother Bertha shared with me over a quick chat, and continued “Leah knows that her parents are undocumented, and that her life could be impacted at any time should we be deported.”

She might just be a fifth grader, but already Leah has attended more immigration rallies and events than she can remember – not to mention that she has helped advocate for pro-immigrant policies in Florida.

For her latest project, Leah asked permission from her teacher and was able to organize her entire class to write letters to children who are locked up at immigration detention facilities in Texas and Pennsylvania.

Leah
Leah has collected over 22 letters for children who are currently detained at immigration facilities in Texas and Pennsylvania

The letters that Leah has collected are part of the “A Wish for the Holidays” campaign, which  launched by We Belong Together in order to tell migrant children that people in the United States do care about them – and are working hard to ensure their release.

WeBelong
Some of the letters written by Leah’s classmates, which will be delivered to migrant children detained in Texas and Pennsylvania

The letters that Leah collected will be delivered to to children in detention centers in Texas and Pennsylvania next week, just in time for the holidays.

Meanwhile, in Florida, Lean plans to join local organizations at a press conference in order to help highlight the importance of keeping immigrant families united.

The Sanles Wilson family is just another example of hard working immigrants who want to give back to their communities. Leah’s mother, Bertha, would qualify for President Obama’s DAPA program – which would shield her from deportation, and allow her to remain in the country with Leah.

However, while DAPA continues to be delayed in the country – Leah and her family show no sign of stopping their advocacy efforts.

“I am so proud of Leah and her efforts, she might be young but she is determined of keeping our family together,” Bertha stated at the end of our conversation “we need more people like Leah. People who are committed to sharing their story, and standing up to politicians who spread lies about the immigrant communities.”