The Ah LAN FAMILY
My name is Ah Lan and I came to the U.S from Toisan, China in 2002. For 7 years now, I have been an active committee member of the Chinese Progressive Association’s Tenant Worker Center fighting to protect low cost housing in San Francisco.
I have a family of four: two daughters, myself, and my husband. I was once employed but due to workplace injuries, I’ve been unable to work for the past 8 years. At the restaurant, I would work about 10 - 11 hours. I would do everything from food preparation to cleaning. I would only get one day off. I constantly had to handle a lot of frozen food and it wasn’t always under the safest conditions. This injured my hands and to this day, I am unable to really lift anything heavy.
My husband is the sole provider for my family and he makes less than $20,000/year. Since my medical visit to China in 2007, I haven’t traveled back to see my family - my grandparents, older brother and sister. At the moment, I am financially incapable of traveling back to China. The cost of living has gone up in the city. We live in the outer Mission in an in-law unit and I feel really lucky that I have a good landlord. Utilities, though, keep going up. I still have to see a medical specialists every 3 months for my rheumatoid arthritis. The cost of transportation to the hospital and, in general, the cost of living adds up.
My grandparents raised me like my parents and I have not seen them in over 7 years - they are in China. I’m very close to them and we can talk about anything. They are both elderly so I hope one day to be able to move them to the U.S to take care of them.
I’d also like to visit my older brother and sister in China. Due to my health and financial difficulties, I haven’t seen them since 2007 and they’ve expressed concern over my current condition. Because I haven’t seen them for such a long time, it’s difficult to grasp our memories together. I don’t even know where to start . . . perhaps we’ll know once we see each other!
I would like to travel in March 2016 for my nephew's wedding with either my husband, if he can take time off of work, or one of my daughters. Thank you for helping bring my family together on this important occasion.
10/3/15: WE ARE RAISING $2,500 TO SEND AH LAN AND HER HUSBAND OR DAUGHTER TO CHINA FOR A BIG FAMILY WEDDING!