Gaby Pacheco arrived in the US at age 8, and thrived here. It wasn't until middle school, when her sisters were rejected from college because they lacked immigration papers, that she found out she wasn't a citizen. But in the years to come, instead of hiding the truth, she did something unusual: she decided to speak out.
Her activism earned her the ire of immigration authorities, who rounded up her family and demanded that she stay quiet if she wanted to prevent their deportation. But she fought back, waging a years-long battle for change. On January 1, 2010, she began a journey that would take her to the national stage: she and three friends began a 1500-mile journey, on foot, that soon made national headlines as the "Trail of Dreams." By the time they reached Washington, DC that May, they had faced down the Ku Klux Klan and built a 30,000-strong petition for reform. Months later, one of them met with Obama to discuss immigration reform—and, just last week, Gaby Pacheco was the one undocumented immigrant to testify for immigration form at the United States Senate.
To hear Gaby tell her extraordinary story of courage, resilience, and hope is to realize that the xenophobes are outmatched, whether they're in Klan robes or pinstripes. Tune in!