Advocates raise money to reunite kids with dads in ICE custody

Posted: Updated:
YONKERS -

Immigration advocacy groups in Westchester are trying to raise money to help children see their fathers who are currently in the custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Jozelyn Zhinin, 8, doesn't want an iPod Touch or a new toy. All she wants this holiday season is to see her dad.

"This year my wish is for my dad to come back," says Zhinin.

Unfortunately her wish can't come true. Manuel Zhinin, of Peekskill, is in ICE custody more than 1,000 miles away in Alabama. She hasn't seen her dad for a year.

"For Thanksgiving, the summer and all the holidays I really miss him a lot and this Christmas Eve is my special Christmas Eve for him to come back," says Zhanin.

Luis Yumbla says his organization, the Hudson Valley Community Coalition, and several other groups are raising money to reunite Jozelyn and three other kids whose fathers are also being detained in Alabama.

Requests to visit their dads has not yet been approved by ICE.

"We cannot understand. They don't allow the families to visit them it's so cruel, so inhuman that it happened," says Yumbla.

Advocates are also reaching out to local lawmakers hoping for a holiday miracle.

A fundraiser to help the kids see their fathers will be held Friday at the South Presbyterian Church in Dobbs Ferry. There's also a GoFundMe page set up to raise money.
 

sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."