After years fighting to get citizenship for her son, Bianca Bless will now take to the stage for the final act of an 11-year tragedy, a final au revoir between parent and child.
Bless, an unemployed opera singer will have a fundraiser concert next weekend to raise funds for her son whom she says she is forced to send back to the United States, his place of birth, after struggling for years to get him South African citizenship.
She got her son while studying in Houston, Texas. After a breakdown in the relationship with the father’s child, she moved back to South Africa where she never managed to land a permanent job, struggling to take care of herself and the child.
For six years, Bless has been trying to get citizenship for the boy after the US consulate did not renew his visa because it needed the father’s approval.
“We left America because he (the father) was abusive. I was only six months away from completing my degree but because the abuse was bad and I feared for my life, I decided to come back home.
“He was only nine months old when we came back. His relative visa expired when he was five and the US consulate refused to renew it because it needed the father’s approval. Since then I have been trying to get him dual citizenship so that we can get him a grant at the very least. I have been struggling to get a job for years, only managing to hold down temporary teacher posts,” said Bless.
Now the mother says she is left with no choice but to send her child back to the states into foster care until he is 18. She has decided to host a gala dinner, where she will be performing to a live band, to raise the funds they need to get to America.
“I feel I have been failed by our government because there is no door I have not knocked. As a last resort, I am turning back to America to try and raise my son until he is of age. The dinner is being held through donations of people who have long sympathised with us. I am asking for the community to help in any way they can,” she added.
The dinner will be at the Komani town hall this Friday, September 23. A single ticket is R150 and a double R250.
For further details, Bless can be contacted on 079-056 6030.