tags: AVEF, Blog

Powerful: DREAMers Reunite With Deported Moms Through Border Fence

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By Yoli Navas:

Today, United We DREAM launched #operationbutterfly as three DREAMers headed to the border to reunite with their deported mothers. After long years of being separated by America’s broken immigration system, Evelyn Rivera, Renata Teodoro, and Carlos Padilla finally saw their mothers again, and used their joint reunion to call for immigration reform that ends the separation of families like theirs. The three DREAMers traveled from Florida, Massachusetts, and Washington to the U.S.-Mexico border just to get a chance to hug and see their moms smile.

Evelyn Rivera, a DREAMer from the Orlando area, reunited with her mom, who was deported to Colombia six years ago after a traffic stop.  After the reunion, she said:

I was afraid of what I was going to feel when I saw my mother, but when I saw her I understood that the love that a mother and daughter feel can never be destroyed.

Renata Teodoro, whose mom turned herself in after her brother was unfairly detained, saw her mom after six years of separation.  Renata has been living on her own in Boston since her family was deported after her first semester at UMass- Boston.  Upon finally seeing her mom again, Renata said:

I was happy and excited, but I was also angry because this fence is still separating me from my beautiful mother.

Carlos Padilla, a DREAMer from Seattle also joined Evelyn and Renata at the border and was able to finally see his mother, who’d returned to Mexico to care for aging relatives several years ago and hasn’t been able to come back to the U.S. since.



While all the three DREAMers were happy to once again be able to see their moms, they were still separated by the thick fencing of the border. The stretched out their arms but weren’t able to fully hold on to each other with the border fence blocking them.

The DREAMers and their mothers were moved to tears at the emotional reunion, remembering the moments of each other’s lives that they’ve missed—graduations, birthdays, Christmases, weekly movie nights—and the moments they dream of being together for in the future.  They pledged to keep fighting to win immigration reform that protects family unity and to not let up until every politician had heard their stories.  Immigration reform is about Evelyn, Renata, Carlos, and every other family who has been torn apart or lives in fear—and our push for it won’t stop until legislation that stops the separation of families is passed.

Watch their emotional reunion here, and view more pictures here.