To celebrate and honor the journeys that our compañeras and clients make together, a team of ten runners accompanied one another to the finish line of a half marathon on April 26 of this year. As they faced the challenges of running 13.1 miles, they remembered the challenges our clients face—language barriers, fear and discrimination, immigration status, and a lack of social supports or information. They ran each of these miles in honor of the strength and courage of one of our clients.
Team Taller de José runs for…
1. Pablo, who was scared and nervous to go to a new hospital for the first time, because he wasn’t sure that anyone there would speak Spanish.
2. Josefa, who lost her public benefits because she has a learning disability and could not understand the notices they sent her.
3. Isabel, who wants to take her children out of the country to meet their grandparents for the first time, but can’t do so because the father, who physically abused her, won’t cooperate to get the children passports
4. Elena, who was able to receive a Temporary Visitors Driver’s License, giving her the ability to drive her daughter to chemotherapy treatments
5. Mariana, who needed to go meet with a lawyer offering pro-bono services, but was scared to leave the Little Village neighborhood for the first time and take the underground subway.
6. Miguel, whose employer took advantage of him when he was injured on the job because Miguel did not understand his rights.
7. Paula, who was terrified to go to the dentist for the first time in years to have extensive dental work done to repair damage caused by domestic abuse.
8. Marco, who has Alzheimer’s and needs assistance filling out forms for his discounted senior bus pass and help communicating with the English-speaking staff at the subsidized senior housing where he lives.
9. Maria, who did not know what to do when her renters refused to pay rent and threatened to harm her.
10. Eva, who was confused about how to enroll her newborn daughter in the state’s health insurance plan for children, and then three years later was nervous about finding a head start program for her.
11. Armando, who was a victim of identity theft who couldn’t understand the court papers explaining that he was being sued for a credit card debt for a credit card he never owned.
12. Isabel, who is a mother struggling to communicate with school officials on behalf of her son who was being bullied at school.
13. Susana, who has been emotionally abused by her husband for years and is seeking counseling for the first time.
13.1 For the staff of Taller de José, who accompanies one another as they minister to these men and women.