My Story

"Since I have been arrested, anxiety and fear have become my everyday life. I am afraid to go out. I am anxious every morning when I get up to go to class because I am afraid of being deported, of waking up one day and thinking that I’m no longer among my own people. What frightens me most is not to live in my country but I am afraid to live far from my family, my brother, my sister, my father and my grandmother, the people who have given a meaning to my life..." To read Hafidh's full testimony, click HERE.

Source: Réseau Education Sans Frontières: ‘La plume sans papier’.










Photo: ©Réseau Education Sans Frontières (RESF). The photo shows a rally of high school students demanding documents for a schoolmate. RESF regularly helps mobilise rallies demanding residence permits and also shared Hafidh’s story with PICUM.

Why not me?

“...I turned 18 and then, I knew that if I was caught, I would be kicked out. I started paying more attention than before, being the most discreet possible and not getting noticed, but unfortunately the police was always there, in train stations, in trains, those two things that represented the most danger for me...France has taken my grandfather to fight war beside her, the country took my father to rebuild it, so why it doesn’t want me? I sill wait for my answer.” To read Kamel's full story, click HERE.

Source: Réseau Education Sans Frontières: ‘La plume sans papier’.











Photo: ©Réseau Education Sans Frontières (RESF). High school students in France calling for a schoolmate not to be deported.

I always try to just think positive

"...Normally, I am someone who is all the time laughing, playing and jumping around but I was really sad at school. I explained my situation to my teacher. She spoke to the Director and they organised a demonstration and led 600 balloons in the air with a message to the State Secretary of Migration.Suddenly there was a lot of media attention …suddenly it became something big and this is how I later got involved with the Kids Parlement...We were a big group, not only Afghans, with the same problems, all young people. It was together with lawyers from the Progress Lawyers Network. This is how Kids Parlement started with young people who were undocumented and never heard in their cases..."

To watch a video of Ramin sharing his full story, click here.

Ramin enjoys playing sports with his friends.












Ramin enjoys playing sports with his friends.

Trying desperately to get into school

“…It’s so frustrating. Even when the law states undocumented children can go to school, there are so many barriers. Always a piece of paper, some identity document or other paperwork they cannot produce. How can you deny a child their education because of such bureaucracy? How can you explain that to a young person? That despite living and studying in the Netherlands since age 10, despite his hard work, ambition and ‘good conduct’, he is excluded because of a piece of paper? A piece of paper that in the end was not required for the internship.” -  Rian Ederveen, Stichting LOS, Netherlands

To read Mohamed’s full story, click HERE.











Photo: Classroom ©Victor Björkund; published under Creative Commons license.

Child without a name

Hanna is five years old. She drew this picture of the happy family she wishes for.

Her mother named her Hanna but her name is nowhere officially recognised; to the German authorities, she is a nameless child. She lives with her Filipina mother, Maria, in Cologne. She was born in Cologne, and has always lived there. She knows no other country than Germany but has been considered an undocumented migrant all her life.

Hanna’s mother, Maria, came to Germany six years ago trying to provide for her two children and husband in the Philippines. She was employed as domestic worker by a diplomat from the United Arab Emirates who repeatedly raped her while she worked in his household.  He is Hanna’s biological father but never recognised paternity and has not been held accountable as his diplomatic immunity protected him from being prosecuted while in Germany. Maria was left undocumented when she fell pregnant and could no longer work, so Hanna was born undocumented.

According to German law, Maria was not entitled to officially determine her child’s name without the consent of her husband in the Philippines or proving that he is not the biological father, since Hanna was born into marriage. For this reason, Hanna’s birth certificate has no first name and only includes her mother’s last name.

To read Hanna’s full story, click HERE.

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