Cris’ Story of Hopes

Cris is a 23 year-old man from Zimbabwe where he was a member of a political party advocating for democracy. One night, police came looking for Cris. At 2:00 a.m. they invaded his home, kidnapped Cris and dragged him to prison, where he was tortured. One day he was inexplicably released from prison, though guards warned him that he would be killed the next time he was imprisoned. Fearing for his life, Cris fled the country and came to the United States seeking asylum.

Though the trauma he suffered made it difficult for him to tell his story—something he would have to do as part of his asylum case—with the help of the counseling services at Center for Survivors of Torture, Cris has been able to fully participate in his legal case. Although it is painful, he is committed to making his story known so that torture may cease in Zimbabwe. Through CST, Cris has also received medical treatment and medication to help with his chronic pain. Although he still suffers from flashbacks, the counseling he has received at CST has helped him to move forward toward finding his purpose in living again. He is attending college and is excited about his studies. He is learning to trust again. Cris now feels that he is a survivor, that he is not alone in his new country, and that he has much to live for. He has hope.