January 20, 2010

Contact – Jose Luis Marantes, 202-573-1490 ,

Students Walking From Miami to Washington, D.C.

Stop in Orlando

Community leaders and residents gather at events in support of 1,500-mile

‘Trail of Dreams’ walk for immigration reform


ORLANDO, FL – Community leaders and residents of Orlando, FL will hold a gathering and walking down to congressional offices to honor the four Florida students who have embarked on a “Trail of Dreams” walk from Miami to Washington, D.C. to raise awareness about the immediate need for just and human reform to our country’s immigration system.


“I’ve gone to school and worked hard because all I want is to give back to the only country I know as home. But I can’t – there is no pathway for me,” said Carlos Roa, 21 “The reality of my life is proof that we need to fix our failed immigration system with solutions that uphold American values.”


Dante Terminello, UCF student, said it was important for the community to come together around the walkers because they are risking their lives to bring attention to an issue of great importance and urgency.


“Raids and detentions have risen dramatically in the past year, more and more families are being separated, and life under our current immigration system is unbearable for these students and for millions of others,” Terminello said.


About the Trail of Dreams


On January 1, 2010, four brave students – three of whom are undocumented immigrants – embarked on a 1,500-mile walk from Miami, FL, to Washington, D.C., to raise awareness about the impact our failed immigration system is having on their lives, and on millions of others. The four walkers – Gaby Pacheco, 24, Carlos Roa, 22, Felipe Matos, 23, and Juan Rodriguez, 20 – were all brought to the U.S. by their parents when they were children, and have excelled in school and as community leaders. Despite their success, they have spent their childhoods in fear and hiding, unable to achieve their real potential. They are calling on our nation’s leaders to fix the system so that people like them who want to work hard have an opportunity to gain an education and participate fully in society.


The Trail of Dreams will stop in cities in towns throughout Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia to engage in dialogue with residents and local leaders – including key Congressional offices. They are expected to arrive in the nation’s capital on May 1. 


About the event(s) in Orlando, FL


Gathering and Walk to Congressional Offices at Lake Eola


What: Orlando residents will welcome the Walkers and walk with them to the offices of Rep. Alan Grayson and Sen. George Lemiux


When: TODAY, Wed January 20, 2010 at 9AM

Where:   Lake Eola Park, Downtown Orlando, on the corner where the Panera Bread is located


Who: Trail of Dreams walkers and Hope Community Center, SWER-UCF, and other Community members


Why: To show support for Trail of Dreams walkers and highlight the stories of how our country’s failed immigration system affects immigrants in Orlando, FL


About the Walkers