Client Stories

**All names have been changed to respect our client's confidentiality and photos are representative stock photos**


               Sally is 8-years old. Sally’s mother was a victim of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) as a child. Sally and her mother used to live in a country in Africa. However, when Sally was born the elder men of the tribe that Sally and her mother belong to decided that Sally, even as an infant, must have her genitals forcibly cut from her body (otherwise known as FGM). For years Sally’s mother was able to protect Sally from undergoing this horrific practice. However, when Sally was 7 a law was passed within the tribe that before Sally turned 8, she must undergo FGM and be prepared to marry the tribe’s chief, an 80-year old man with multiple wives. For those who are unfamiliar, children are forced to undergo the removal of their genitals against their will, without a doctor and without medicine.

               Faced with an impossible decision, Sally’s mother stayed strong and refused to allow the elder men to cut the genitalia from her daughter’s body. The tribe issued several threats, promising that Sally’s mother and father would be killed and that Sally would be taken by the tribe to undergo FGM and marriage to the Chief. Sally’s mother knew that the tribe’s threats would become reality due to the murder of her brother-in-law and sister-in-law 2 years prior when they refused to allow the tribe to perform FGM on their daughter. Sally's mother went to the police but the police refused to help them or even file a police report.

                With no choice but to flee her country to save her daughter as well as her own life, Sally’s mother brought herself and Sally to the United States for safety. Sally and her mother are one of the many clients the Children’s Legal Center provides with free immigration legal services. The Children’s Legal Center is committed to providing free immigration legal services to help children achieve safety because safety is a basic human right no matter what country you are born in.

Please support the Children's Legal Center to help Sally and other children like her!


               Heather was a teenager living in Mexico when her father woke her in the middle of the night and told her that she was being sent to the United States that night. Heather’s father was abusive, but she didn’t want to leave Mexico or her mother. However, Heather was not given a choice.

               That night, a man in her neighborhood came to Heather’s house and transported her to Illinois. Heather was held within a home in Illinois for a few weeks before she was sold to a man named Frank for $2,400.00. Heather didn’t know Frank but was forced to go with him because he had purchased her. Frank took Heather to his home where he raped and beat her for years. He impregnated Heather multiple times. Heather always wanted to leave, but she couldn’t. Heather did not know a single person in Illinois. She was afraid of the police because she knew that she was undocumented. She thought that if she went to the police station for help, she would be arrested. Heather had no money to even pay for a bus ticket since she had been held by Frank for years.

               It wasn’t until Heather came into contact with a bi-lingual advocate at a domestic violence shelter (one of the Children’s Legal Center’s partners) that she was finally able to escape. The advocate helped Heather and her children get into a shelter and away from Frank. Heather is one of the many victims of human trafficking that the Children’s Legal Center provides free legal services to. 

Please support the Children's Legal Center to help Heather and other children like her!


               Ruth was a 16-year old girl living with her parents when her father decided to take her to the United States to work and send money home. Her father brought her to the United States and then abandoned her. Not long after she came to the United States, an adult male at least 20 years older than her began to notice that Ruth was alone and scared. He began to target her and on one terrible day, he kidnapped her. He raped Ruth repeatedly for days and decided that she would belong to him from then on. 

               For years the man forced her to work up to 7 days a week and 14 hours per day. He took all of the money she made and, if she ever asked for money for herself, he would rape her to make her "pay" for it. Ruth escaped and, after many years, she was ready to come forward with her story. 

Please support the Children's Legal Center to help Ruth and other children like her!


               Tiffany is a citizen of Togo who protested the oppressive Rally of the Togolese People party (RPT) regime and its president. Ms. Tiffany began protesting the regime after the controversial and violent election of 2005. She was beaten and raped by the military soldiers while her brother was beaten to death by the soldiers. 

               After the traumatic event, she began more politically active fighting for the injustice the people where living under by the RPT regime. She continued protesting, until the government became more hostile towards protesters in 2014 and started to repress demonstrators.

               The RPT began focusing on Tiffany’s political oppression after she gained international attraction after traveling to Germany, where a significant population of exiled Togo citizens live. 

               While Tiffany was visiting the United States under a tourist visa in 2018, the RPT targeted her friend at a protest in an attempt to locate Tiffany’s whereabouts. They forced her friend, under sever torture to reveal Tiffany’s home. At her home, the RPT came upon her sister and murdered under the impression of being Tiffany. 

               Tiffany sought asylum in the United States after the murder of her sister. She applied for asylum in June 2019; today we are happy to inform you that, with the help of your donations, her asylum case was approved in September 2019. 

Please support the Children's Legal Center to help Tiffany and other children like her!