Tiwonge and her family came to the UK to join her father. Although they had settled in the country, they faced challenging scenarios that came hand-in-hand with being an alien in a foreign land, as they had yet to be given leave to stay indefinitely.
‘My family faced so many obstacles. My older brothers were unable to enrol in university because the visa rules affected their applications. The visa terms were more lenient in some areas, however. In the past, I was able to travel on school trips during my primary and secondary school years.
My parents also suffered in order to give us a hope of staying. They struggled to pay bills because they had been saving some money towards our applications to remain in the country. In the end, many of the other applications were denied. We even spent money on lawyers to help fight our case, but that also failed. We felt as though we were on our own.’
Tiwonge had witnessed enough disappointments for her and her family. When the opportunity for her to use her faith presented itself at the HelpCentre, she was ready for the challenge.
‘I decided to sacrifice in the Campaign last year. My sacrifice was made extremely difficult because there were times when my faith was put to the test, but I didn’t let it stop me.
Six months later, my mother took me and my older brother to the Home Office in Cardiff, which was miles further than our local branch.
When we arrived, it was empty and the staff were really nice. We expected to be there until 6pm; however, the process finished around 3pm and we were finally given our documents for indefinite leave to remain. Although the process was handled very quickly, I already felt assured through my sacrifice on the Altar.’