Several organizations in Central Florida teamed up to provide assistance to Venezuelan refugees, helping them fill out important paperwork to acquire Temporary Protected Status.
What You Need To Know
- Many refugees coming to the U.S. are fleeing from dangerous situations in Venezuela
- Saturday's event was to help them with paperwork, questions
- Temporary Protected Status can be granted to people from 12 countries, mostly in South America and the Middle East
It’s also referred to as TPS.
If granted, they would be protected through the beginning of September of 2022.
Organizers said many of these refugees coming to the United States are fleeing from dangerous situations in Venezuela.
Mariela Alvarez de van Adelberg, who is currently living in Central Florida, is applying.
“It's not easy to leave your country,” said Adelberg.
She has already sought asylum after leaving from Venezuela.
“I was almost kidnapped, I was screaming, some people were helping me. It was in a commercial mall. That day I decided I had to leave the country," she said.
While going through the asylum process, she also was one of about 50 Venezuelans receiving help Saturday filling out the Temporary Protected Status Form at the Faith United Methodist Church.
“It's a better way to have a status quicker,” said Adelberg.
It's a 12-page form asking a number of questions. Latino leadership, Casa de Venezuela and Faith United Methodist Church are all making this possible.
“TPS is that permission to get the permission to stay in the country for a certain time, and you can even work. It's opening a window for the community that's right now even scared what's going to happen to their status,” said Marytza Sanz with Latino Leadership.
Leomery Switzer is the volunteer helping Mariela. She is a dual citizen of Venezuela and the U.S.
“To help, to help my Venezuelan people to be part of this country, as am I,” said Switzer.
In addition to help filling out forms, they are getting free legal assistance from Immigration Attorney's with Florida Justice for Our Neighbors.
Mariela and others receiving the help thankful for assistance Saturday, and looking forward to what the future holds.
“After all this craziness its a way that maybe its a way this country can help us.”
Registration for Venezuelans to apply for TPS runs through September 5, 2021.
Temporary Protected Status can be granted to people from 12 countries, mostly in South America and the Middle East.