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Breaking Barriers: Stephanie’s Story of Hope

Stephanie Gago, Esperanza Academy Class of 2012, is a woman of intelligence and perseverance now paving the way for other women in a male-dominated field. Working diligently through AP Calculus, attending Esperanza Academy’s Prep Zone for homework assistance, and learning from many financial aid and college scholarship workshops hosted by the College & Career Department,…

Martha’s Story: A New Season of Hope

The process for obtaining citizenship can be a very stressful one, but that did not discourage Martha. Martha came to the United States in 2013, worked at a bakery, and eventually found her way to working in Esperanza Academy’s cafeteria services. There, she learned of Esperanza Immigration Legal Services (EILS). After speaking to a representative,…

Nohely’s Story of Hope: Empowering a New Generation of Entrepreneurs

Nohely came to the United States from the Dominican Republic with her father and stepmother at the young age of ten years old. Nohely recalls feeling culture shock as a new student in a new country. When Nohely found Esperanza in her 8th grade year, she finally discovered a safe place to learn and grow.…

Deborah’s Story of Hope: Empowering Influencers & Changemakers

                  After her family immigrated to the United States, Deborah looked forward to pursuing her college degree. She found a home at Esperanza College of Eastern University. Here, she was surrounded by other students who had similar journeys and lived experiences to her own. With Spanish as…

Maria’s Restaurant: Back in Action

Maria’s Restaurant has been a fixture along the Hunting Park 5th Street corridor, offering authentic Caribbean food at affordable prices since 1997. Together with her sons and local employees, she serves an average of 100 people each day. Maria closed the restaurant on March 16th due to the coronavirus, taking with it her family’s only source of income. Esperanza worked with…

Guillermo’s Story: Seizing Hope!

When Guillermo reached out to Esperanza, he had lost his job of many years. He was behind on his utilities and in foreclosure. As the only member of his household to earn an income, Guillermo urgently needed a job and knew what he wanted: to become a licensed truck driver. Our workforce team assisted Guillermo…

Overcoming Fear: Mateo’s New Citizen Story

For many immigrants, fear is like an anchor weighing down hope and forward movement. Applying for citizenship can feel daunting, and research shows that lack of knowledge about government laws and legal services prevents many from applying each year. When Mateo saw an Esperanza Immigration Legal Services (EILS) commercial, he was excited. He had been…

Maria & Ramiro Madrid: Achieving Citizenship as a Family 

When we ensure that immigrants have the opportunity to live to become United States citizens, we empower some incredible role models in our communities. Here is the story of Maria and Ramiro Madrid and how they used their opportunity to help families just like them. The Madrid family arrived in Philadelphia from Medellín, Colombia in 2008. In…

Financial Assistance for Guadalupe: Finding Hope Through Uncertainty 

Guadalupe was looking to rebuild her life after enduring an abusive marriage. Because her abusive husband was a U.S. Citizen, she was able to self-petition for an Adjustment of Status via the Violence Against Women Act and received her green card in 2014. For five years, Guadalupe worked hard to move past her traumatic experience. She learned English and even started her own cleaning business.    In 2019, Guadalupe was referred to Esperanza Immigration Legal Services…

Rosalia’s Journey to Citizenship During COVID-19  

The world has rapidly shifted in many ways due to the COVID-19 pandemic. One transition millions have had to adjust to is virtual learning and services. In 2014, Rosalia traveled to the United States to be reunited with her children and grandchildren after her son filed a petition on her behalf. After spending five years in the U.S. as a green card holder, she began the naturalization process to ensure a future with her loved…
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