Faryal’s Journey

Our name – California Human Development – encompasses who we are and what we do for our community. The Immigration and Citizenship Lodi office was presented with another opportunity to make a difference in the life of someone who had no one to turn to. Through the assistance of our case managers, Faryal was able to receive not only assistance with her immigration case, but a new lease on life through the network of services we rely on to help clients with non-immigration needs. 

Faryal is a 26-year-old native of Pakistan. She first came to CHD-Lodi in August 2021, requesting assistance with the renewal of her lawful permanent residence card. What would have been a normal process, quickly escalated into a personal safety situation for Faryal. 

In March 2021, Faryal’s husband, also a native of Pakistan, took her to Pakistan under the pretext of visiting family because her mother was ill and suffering from depression. He told her he would return for her once she had a one-week visit with her mother. Faryal did not think much of this request until he took her Pakistan passport, her lawful permanent residence card, and her social security card. His reason for taking Faryal’s documents was to keep them safe from getting lost.  

At the beginning of her stay, she communicated with her husband through text and phone calls. Everything seemed normal to Faryal until two days into her stay when she tried calling her husband and his cell phone was off. She began to worry that he was not responding to her messages and phone calls. When she finally received a message from her husband, he told her that he had returned to the United States and had filed for divorce. He informed her that she would soon be receiving the divorce papers by mail and even sent her a photo of the divorce papers on her phone with explicit orders to not call him or reach out to him again. 

Faryal had no idea why her husband was divorcing her. They had what she believed to be a happy marriage. His actions were shocking to Faryal and put her mother into a deeper depression. Faryal had enough presence of mind to travel to the Embassy in Islamabad Pakistan and was issued a new passport and visa to travel to the United States to renew her lawful permanent residence card. 

In August, Faryal scheduled her appointment with Sarah (featured above), an Immigration & Citizenship Case Manager at the Lodi CHD office. She shared what her husband had done and that he was now causing problems for his cousin who was helping Faryal by allowing her to stay at her house. The cousin’s husband did not want Faryal staying with them, but no one was willing to help her.   

Once Sarah heard the story, she immediately called the Women’s Center in Lodi and one of the staff there picked up Faryal and took her to a secure place. Due to the constant threats from her husband, she had to be moved twice for her personal safety. Thanks to the assistance of CHD Lodi staff, Faryal is in the processing of securing her own place and will soon start a job training program. The San Joaquin County Victim Witness Program is paying for all her expenses including her immigration case, and they are helping her file a case against her ex-husband. Faryal now feels safe and secure. She is very grateful to CHD staff for assisting with the replacement of her lawful permanent residence card and providing the lifeline from the Women’s Center and the Victim Witness Program she so desperately needed. The assistance Faryal received from CHD Lodi truly saved her life. 

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