European fellows from Hungary (Zsofi), Bulgaria (Victoria), Slovakia (Boba) and Romania (Laura) did also a bit of volunteering on Saturday (October 12, 2013) in Chicago. Boba and Laura helped their co-fellows Zsofi and Victoria (from the same fellowship program in U.S., coordinated by Great Lakes Consortium for international training and development & thanks to U.S. department financial support) during very interesting march on immigration reform, organized by one of the hosting organization ICIRR.
The Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights is a statewide coalition of more than 130 organizations dedicated to promoting the rights of immigrants and refugees to full and equal participation in the civic, cultural, social, and political life of our diverse society.
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Thousands of immigrant leaders and families and allies from immigrant rights, labor, faith communities marched on October 12th to demand that Congress should pass immigration reform with dignity, justice and respect for all immigrants.
The action started at Teamster city at 12pm and it ended around 4pm at Daley Plaza in Chicago city. Zsofi and Victoria prepared the banners and posters for the march and helped organizers to gather people from different neighborhoods of Chicago. Laura and Boba took photos, videos and made notes for their reports. The marching people demanded that the federal government should halt deportations, stop the further criminalization of immigrants, and pass legalization that includes a pathway to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants. We could see hundreds of banners and posters with slogans like: “Legalizacion ahora”, “Obama, escucha! Estamos en la lucha!”; and we could hear the sentences like: “Stop the deportations.”; “Families together.”; “Enough is enough.”
The Most Important idea that we’ve learn that day was: How powerful and strong one crowd of thousands of courageous people can be – when it’s well organized (people stand together to achieve their goal – basic human rights). It can have very strong influence on politicians & decision makers!