Parivar Bay Area, LGBT Asylum Project join hands to enhance partnership at Center for Immigrant Protection


Parivar Bay Area and The LGBT Asylum Project have announced an enhanced partnership to continue their journey together as the Center for Immigrant Protection (CIP). A release said, “As the first organization on Castro Street to provide comprehensive support for the unique and multifaceted needs of the LGBTQIA+ immigrant community, the CIP focuses on ensuring safety and wellbeing and celebrating social belonging, particularly uplifting TGNCI+ (Transgender, Gender Non-Conforming, and Intersex) immigrants. The resource-rich space continues to offer comprehensive and accessible support services, including legal assistance and social integration while promoting awareness, education, acceptance, and resources to foster intersectional unity and rebuild lives in America.”

The CIP said that while it serves all LGBTQIA+ immigrants, the center’s primary focus is on supporting the most vulnerable within the community.

“Recognizing the challenges TGNCI+ immigrants face, the two organizations are uniting efforts in a shared commitment. CIP’s foremost objective is to go beyond the provision of legal services to address the holistic journey of TGNCI+ immigrants, supporting them at every stage of their immigrant experience from the moment they arrive,” it said.

“The center provides resources to support them throughout their journey as they put down roots in their home of San Francisco, an internationally known refuge for the LGBTQ+ community, a place where they can be safe, secure, healthy, and productive,” CIP added.

Okan Sengun, Esq. (He/Him) has been appointed Executive Director, Center for Immigrant Protection (CIP) by the newly formed Board of Directors of the Center for Immigrant Protection. Sengun brings over 15 years of experience as an advocate for the most vulnerable and has been securing asylum and legal protections for LGBTQ+ asylees since 2012.

Most recently, Sengun was recognized as a grassroots immigrant leader by the City and County of San Francisco.

Anjali Rimi (She/They) has been elected to serve as CIP’s President and Chair, Board of Directors. Rimi served as the most recent president and CEO of ParivarBayArea and is a San Francisco Bay Area-based award-winning Global South Asian API “Kinner” immigrant Transgender woman and local legend known for her transgender advocacy.

Sengun said, “In order to meet the needs of our clients and all LGBTQIA+ immigrants in our community while they start their new lives, we are proud to officially partner with ParivarBayArea (PBA).”

He added, “PBA has been providing services to Trans and Gender Non-Conforming Intersex immigrants from the Global South for the past five years, including three years under our fiscal sponsorship, and we’ve been working successfully together since then. Now is the time to strengthen our partnership between The LGBT Asylum Project and PBA, under the Center for Immigrant Protection, to ensure that all LGBTQIA+ immigrants in our community have access to life-saving services. These services should not be limited to legal assistance but should also address a wide range of needs, particularly those of TGNCI+ immigrants.”

Ajanli Rimi said, “We are proud to come together as the Center for Immigrant Protection. Our commitment to tackling the unique and unaddressed needs of LGBTQIA+ immigrants sets us apart. And we are dedicated to ensuring that TGNCI+ immigrants receive the holistic support they deserve so they are able to thrive in San Francisco and beyond.”

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