Save my foster son Samet - he is family!

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Please, please sign this petition to help my wonderful 18 year old foster son Samet continue his life here where he is part of a loving family and be in the only place where he can have a secure future.

Samet’s childhood was stolen by beatings and abuse he faced. He ended up being forced to beg on the streets of Albania at 11 years of age, before he was sold into slavery and trafficked into the UK at 15. He has now restarted his life with us in the UK - we are a family. But now the Home Office are trying to deport him. We are trying to reverse this decision.

Samet was diagnosed with PTSD from a life of misery and the still untold horrors of his journey but he finally found sanctuary here. He became part of my family alongside his new brothers Ali and Dave. Our family greatly fear his safety and health if he is sent away. 

Deprived of education for many years he grasped the opportunity of school and then college where his efforts are described as outstanding in all areas. He dreams of being a carpenter and the sort of ordinary life most of us take for granted were always clouded by the daily fear that he could be rejected by the nation that’s given him hope for the first time.

That fear was present everyday since he arrived but he was given hope by his brothers - Dave (who I fostered 22 years ago from the age  of 11) and fellow Albanian Ali (with me for 4 years, having also arrived with nothing and now a head chef). Inspired by how they rebuilt their lives, Samet dared to dream of a future.

I can’t stand by and watch his dreams be shattered. I have been a foster carer for almost 30 years and expected Samet to be part of my family for the rest of my days. 

The moment that I had to tell him that his appeal to stay in the UK had failed was the worst feeling that I can remember. My words crushed his spirit and have broken him. As a foster carer I have never felt so helpless so all I can do is highlight his situation and hope that if enough people sign this petition then maybe our Government will reconsider the life sentence that they have given this young man.

I describe Samet as a ‘Soldier’ because every day is a battle to survive. Many other ‘Soldiers’ have run away rather than be deported and live their lives in the shadows of our society forever vulnerable to exploitation. I don’t want that outcome for Samet. 

Thank you for your support

John Stokes