2018-11-18: Vivian, a Computer Tech graduate Asylum Seeker telling his story
“I didn’t migrate, I ran for my life….”
2018-11-19: Asylum Seekers Vivian from Honduras telling his story
Interviewer: We are here in..
Vivian: Jalisco. Jalisco, Guadalajara.
Interviewer: Ok. Who am I speaking with?
Vivian: My name is Vivian Ojeliq Verde Calix.
Interviewer: Where are you from?
Vivian: I am from Honduras.
Interviewer: What is your name? You said your name was?
Interviewer: Vivian. Ok Vivian. You are from Honduras. When did you leave Honduras?
Vivian: I left the 22 of October.
Interviewer: The 22 of October. Why did you leave?
Vivian: Well in reality, I didn’t immigrate, I fled from my country. Because in our country there are no opportunities. I am graduated. I studied computer science. At IPC (Instituto Politecnico Centroamericano) [Central American Polytechnic Institute) I also completed various welding courses. I can make all types of wine, but in Honduras we don’t have opportunities. You can submit your papers, they tell you they are going to call you. I submitted my papers to various companies and honestly they have never called me to give me an opportunity. So, I was working in transportation from San Pedro to Olanchito; but it is very complicated because you are paid very little and you have to pay extortion… Yes to the gangs and all.
Interviewer: To the…
Vivian: Yes, to the mafia. So…
Interviewer: Is that common in Honduras? Extortions?
Vivian: Yes there is a lot of extortion. A lot of criminality. You don’t have security. The president that we have… even the military and the police are against the people. They turned on the people because they are well paid by him (the president).
Interviewer: And do you have plans now? What are your plans today?
Vivian: No, we are still waiting for the other caravan because we are just the first half. The other one stayed in Queretaro. We are about 3000 who are coming. And our mission is to get to the United States so that we can, if God wants, give our family a new life; be able to make our homes, maybe start a business so that we can send remittances, because in Honduras there is no money, there is no work. Look over there if there is a small job they don’t want to pay you much and it doesn’t last.
Imagine, we used to pay 200 lempiras for electricity and now that the president sold the “ENEE” (Empresa Nacional de Energia Electrica) [National Electrical Energy Company] now it comes up to 1200.
Vivian: The salary we earn, is not enough to cover even basic needs. So it is not suited for anything (2:25 2:26)
Interviewer: And do you have friends or any family in the United States that can help you?
Vivian: No. We are going through the hand of God.
Interviewer: Ok. Do you have something else you may want to add so that the people who live in the United States may know who Vivian is?
Vivian: Yes, nothing more than to open the doors for us, to open your hearts. We are hard working migrants, we want an opportunity, since in our Honduras we the youth are given an opportunity. That they open up and extend their hands and receive us well. Lots of people say we are murderers, thieves, no it’s nothing like that… maybe someone can filter themselves in but we are hard working people. Like I’m telling you, for my work I used to get up at 1:00am every day because I had the route that started at 2:45am. I’ve woken up at 1:00am for four years after only sleeping 3.5 hours. Can you imagine for 900 lempiras/week ($37 USD) almost all day away from my home, and I hardly saw my family.
Interviewer: How many lempiras is $1? Do you know?
Vivian: Yes, it is like $50 the day. No, the week. Because for $50 you are given 1000 lempiras and I only earned 900. So let’s say I only earned $50/week.
Interviewer: Do you have siblings?
Vivian: Yes I have many siblings. Who are crying because I left. I have one daughter.
Interviewer: Do you miss them already?
Vivian: Yes, a lot. My mother. I can’t speak with my mother because she gets out of control crying. Because I had never ever left my home and I had to come now because of the lack of opportunities in our country. Because of our president. The US president said he would take away the aid that goes to Honduras, we don’t care because the aid goes to him (the Honduran president), they don’t come to us. It’s very complicated. Our government has just kicked us around.
Interviewer: Ok, thank you for your time and I wish you a lot of luck. Right.
Vivian: Thank you. Oh and also, we are thankful to Mexico and Guatemala because they have treated us 100%, 100%. I can’t complain. They have given us food and clothing. I haven’t taken anything because there are lots of people who take and leave it lying around. One must only take what you will use. But we are thankful for the shelter, food until you say “no more”. Guatemala too. We have come across all of Mexico with security, with state police, federal, red cross, “Grupos Beta” (Beta groups”, we have come well. No one touches us because they are with us. So thank you to Mexico and Guatemala too.