Our community helps us find strength in ourselves. Together we hold each other up and push each other forward. We have power because no one has to go through hardship alone.
Last Sunday, many of us read about the senseless violence that took place at the Gilroy Garlic Festival. Among the victims was Keyla Salazar, the niece of Katiuska Pimentel, a beloved member of our Immigrants Rising family. Katiuska is a community advocate and an influential leader, and was previously part of Immigrants Rising’s Scholars Program and Community Engagement Program.
Katiuska has already overcome many hardships. After migrating from Peru in her teens to escape rampant violence and poverty, she arrived in California alone and without any knowledge of English. Throughout high school, she cleaned houses and babysat to support herself. She was run over by a car, which resulted in post-traumatic stress disorder, post-concussion syndrome, depression, and months of physical therapy. Katiuska bravely talked about that dark period in her life when she applied to our Community Engagement Program: “The pain inside of me was strong, but it was not enough to stop my desire to succeed in life.”
We trust that Katiuska’s invincible spirit, deep empathy, and strong community of support will allow her and her family to heal from this devastating loss, and we ask you to join us in supporting her and her family by donating to the family’s GoFundMe campaign. The funds raised will enable the family to cover her niece’s funeral and necessary living expenses.
Thank you for letting Katiuska and her family know that they are not alone.