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Amina's story

15/12/2023, London

“I feel alive every time I see my family back together in front of my eyes and that I am with my daughter after a long time.” 

Amina* was separated from her family in the chaos that followed the Taliban’s takeover in Afghanistan and the UK’s botched withdrawal. 

She was only a child, but managed to reach the UK. 

However, she was all alone. Starting again in a strange new country is tough for anyone. As a child alone worrying for her family’s safety, things were extra tough for Amina.  

The rest of her family was still stuck in Afghanistan and in serious danger. Their worst fears were realised when one of them was captured by the Taliban. 

Unfortunately, this isn’t unusual. It’s why we provide support to bring families back together and help people to escape this danger.  

A challenging case 

We have a project dedicated to supporting people from Afghanistan. This project is run in partnership with Safe Passage International and a group of law firms. 

Our expert legal team worked with the family throughout the case. We advised them on their rights, gathered the evidence they needed and made the submissions to the authorities. 

This case was fraught with challenges - it fell outside of the usual rules, meaning it was extra complicated legally - but also because the family were in hiding with no internet access. We struggled to communicate with them throughout the case as we tried to take their statements.

Barriers to reunification

This case illustrates the needless barriers that the UK government puts in people’s way. 

The family were in hiding but were forced to travel to Pakistan to submit their biometric data (fingerprints, etc.). Even in Pakistan they were at risk as they only had temporary visas and could have been deported if found. 

Joy at the airport

In the last few weeks, we were delighted to learn that the case was successful. Amina would finally be reunited with her family. 

They sent us photos of the moment they got back together at the airport. They powerfully demonstrate what it means for Amina’s family to be back together. 

They’re still in touch with the team and keep sending through photos and messages of thanks. 

“It still looks like a dream to me. Most of the time, I think that the world can be this cruel, that meeting your own daughter would seem like a dream come true.”

How you can help

We’re only able to provide this support because of the help of our friends and supporters. That’s why we’ve launched our winter campaign.

If you can, please support our campaign so we can help more families to finally reach safety and fight back against cruel policies. 

*Names have been changed

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