Bernal Cruz was born in Guatemala during its 36-year civil war. When his father, a career military officer, was asked to work for an intelligence team
that used torture techniques, his family sought asylum in the United States. An eighth-grader at the time, Bernal missed the community he left behind in Guatemala. Bernal tells a story of returning to Guatemala as an adult, expecting something different than what he experienced as a young boy, but finding surprising joys, nonetheless. He has lived in Portland for 30 years and considers it his home. As a social worker, he assists unaccompanied children who, like him, came to the United States in their childhood seeking a better life. He is a husband and father to two boys and enjoys outdoor activities in the Pacific Northwest, as well as traveling with his family.
DREAMs Deferred Live is a production of the award-winning nonprofit The Immigrant Story. The stories were broadcast live on YouTube from St. Andrew Lutheran Church in Beaverton, Oregon, on Saturday, September 12, 2020. With a focus on stories and experiences from our undocumented community, DREAMs Deferred Live provided a space for storytelling, cultural exchange and empathy in light of looming threats to DACA. They were coached by Erin Briddick and assisted by Marie Gettel-Gilmartin.
Subscribe to The Immigrant Story Live channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCPai…
Major funding for DREAMS Deferred Live is provided by the generous contribution of the presenting sponsor Zidell Family Foundation. Additional funding was provided by the City of Beaverton as a part of the Beaverton Welcoming Week.