Inspired by his father’s inability to return to his motherland, which has prevented him from visiting his siblings or the graves of his parents for over 37 years, Hajde! Founder and President Anton Lulgjuraj ’23 took it upon himself this past summer to increase access to documents outlining processes and qualifications for US Citizenship. Hailing from Montenegro, Anton’s father struggles speaking English much like many immigrants to the United States, and with Albanian being his father’s main language it was impossible to find any documents of which provided any use in helping his father navigate a pathway towards Citizenship.
It is no secret that such translated forms are difficult to come by, with data from a U.S. General Accounting Office investigation from 1990-95 showing that of 400,000 documents produced by the office during that period only 265 were in a language other than English, or 00.04%. While this data is dated the findings are not all that different, with many significant documents only being translated into one other language if that, and lesser spoken languages completely forgotten.
It is stories like these of which many can relate, and it is frequency of these instances that has galvanized the members of Hajde! to attempt and make a change, creating a master guide outlining pathways to citizenship for US immigrants who are documented. The goal with this guide is to amass as many translations as possible, which can be used to establish a base of translated guides of which can be of use to countless non-English speakers.
This is where the Wesleyan Community can step in!
As of this point the guide has only begun translation by members of Hajde! Wesleyan and a few other volunteers, consisting of Albanian, Serbian/Croatian/Bosnian, Spanish and Bengali. This is where we call upon the Wesleyan Community to help us in our goal to maximize the number of translated guides. With the help of those on campus we can exponentially increase the effectiveness of this project and provide unparalleled access to information regarding pathways to citizenship which can not only increase access to voter registration but also entails protection from deportation, allows for said person to file immigration petitions and enables complete freedom of travel amongst a slew of other opportunities. To help out, please contact Anton Lulgjuraj or follow the Hadje! instagram (@hajdewesleyan).