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  1. 2 likes
    For those of you who are interested - I would like to make you part of our journey and maybe it helps someone else in the future as I found there is limited information for South Africans petitioning with the i-360 form. Just an update on our i-360 petition in the EB4 category at USCIS. The priority date for our application is 15 September 2017 and we only expected a response around mid-December. So it happened that on day 54 of our application we received an RFE. We would have been stoked to have received an approval notice instead but we are grateful that our application is being processed a month earlier than we expected. My employer, who is the petitioner, is now waiting to receive the RFE so that we can see exactly what they are requesting. I will update you on the RFE. We are consulting the immigration lawyers again on this so that we can be sure we are sending everything USCIS needs. Here are also a few updates on our local documentation applications: 1. Unabridged Birth Certificates (R75 per application ) Applied on: 1 Nov 2017 Received on: 08 Nov 2017 (we are still waiting for my wife's certificate) 2. Police Clearance (R114 per application) Applied on: 06 Nov 2017 Received on: - 3. Unabridged Marriage Certificate (R75 per application) (We have reapplied as they issued us previously with an abridged certificate instead of an unabridged version.) Applied on: 09 Nov 2017 Received on: - 4. North-West University Graduation Certificate (R200) Applied on: 02 Nov 2017 Received on: 08 Nov 2017 Hope everyone has a great day!
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    And today’s terribly sad news of the church shooting in Texas, plus the awful Vegas tragedy, just underscores that in fact white men with guns are far more dangerous to Americans than DV immigrants whether Muslim or not.
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    Wishing you all the luck in the world. It is a lottery, but a weighted lottery based on region and country of origin. So the odds are really not that bad at all for us South Africans. On average about roughly 20,000 Saffers enter each year (sometimes more, sometimes less) and anywhere between 700 and 1200 are selected. Those are some pretty darn good odds for any lottery system. The trick is to keep at it and just live your life. Don’t let an unsuccessful entry stop you entering again the following year. Keep your paperwork up to date and keep on keeping on. If/when it happens the wait and effort will be worth it. We just made it part of our annual routine, like doing our taxes, hanging our Christmas decorations, paying our TV license, renewaing out vehicle license, fertilizing the lawn, entering the DV lottery... a few years went by and BOOM! Our entry won! Also remember if you’re married, you can both enter separately to improve your chances. Good luck and vasbyt!
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    CNN does not report fake news all the time. Just some of the time. http://www.tmz.com/2017/06/27/cnn-trump-russia-undercover-video-producer/
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    I agree with SJ272. if you take all the school shootings and other mass shootings it's mostly been by white males.
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    Greatschools is a decent website, did you see this article? https://www.greatschools.org/gk/articles/charter-schools-2/
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    Do your research on the charter you are thinking of. “Charter” does not automatically mean good (although many of them are). I have a friend with kids in a really excellent charter school, but some of the charter schools have had some serious issues. Another friend in a different state took her kid out of one, and there’s one in another friend’s town that has had some major problems. If there are any issues with the charter school, if they are serious issues you’ll probably find local newspaper articles etc on the net. Best is if you can somehow try to talk to other parents, but that can be hard if you don’t have someone to introduce you. I believe some of the better ones are quite hard to get into as well, something else to consider vs moving to a good school district where they have to place you in their system.
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    SJ272 is merely referring to the fact that an overwhelming majority of mass shootings are perpetrated by White Men, and also that this fact is a big part of current mainstream discourse on mass shootings. Unfortunately, this may seem racially (and gender) charged because of the facts that it is indeed WHITE MEN who disproportionately commit these sort of heinous acts - CNN and Time in the last month alone: Time: http://time.com/4968842/one-undeniable-factor-in-gun-violence-men/ e.g. "White men are much more likely to own guns than non-whites, and the “super-owners” amassing arsenals of weapons are particularly likely to be white, male and conservative." CNN: http://www.cnn.com/2017/10/03/opinions/mass-shootings-white-male-rage-modan-opinion/index.html e.g. "out of 62 cases between 1982 and 2012 , 44 of the killers were white men " and "An over-affinity for guns among white men, dangerous against any other backdrop, gets defended as patriotism by many conservatives or even as white pride by those on the alt-right" So, with the current administration, the focus won't be on addressing any legislation to try and curtail these mass shootings, but, to your point, Adder, possibly introducing legislation impacting the DV lottery for a really isolated case of 1 DV recipient radical.
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    Good luck to everyone, let's hope that 2019 is the year. when we entered last yeat we sorta placed our whole life on hold, and after getting the "no" answer i was super sad. So we have also just made it part of our life, enteries done, and we live on untill we get selected. So again Good luck to everyone.. 2019 might just be it for all of us!!
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    Hi everyone, I'd like to introduce myself to the forum members and share a bit of our journey. I've been reading through many of the posts and it gives one the sense that you are not alone because sometimes the whole visa process gets a bit lonely. I currently have an I-360 Special Immigrant Religious Worker petition filed at USCIS. The petition was filed by my future employer in the States. We will receive a decision notice earliest around 15th December 2017. Luckily for us, the visas in our category are current. In the EB4 Special Immigrant Category my wife can apply for her GC as a derivative. We don't have kids so things are less complicated in that area. I guess our challenge is with regard to the house, vehicle, and belongings........ We've been getting our documents ready for our future consular interview - I must say we have been able to source our unabridged marriage and birth certificates with far less hassles than I have read of on these forums. Our little town seems to offer same day services. If all goes well we are hoping for our plans to fall in place around April next year. I'm looking forward to sharing and learning in this forum.
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    Much of the US immigration system is, highlighted by the fact that the data show DV winners are much more likely to be educated, speak English and working at good jobs than other immigrants, of whom the vast majority are chain family immigrants. I can understand immediate family but the US system is massively generous...siblings, adult children and their entire families, etc.... Beyond time that a more intelligent, Canada/Australia/old UK HSMP type program got implemented. Of course there is a lot of bipartisan support for such too, just the way US politics works it never seems to get beyond the senate.
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    18/10/2017 Have just re-submitted the entry after the technical system glitch . Now i wait pray that all goes well for me and my family. 2019 our year.
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    Got an email last night - all must enter again for DV2019 FROM: DONOTREPLY[at]dvlottery.state.gov "Dear Diversity Visa Program entrant:Please check www.dvlottery.state.gov for an important announcement regarding your Diversity Visa Program entry.Remember, only internet sites that end with the ".gov" domain suffix are official U.S. government websites. Many other websites (e.g., with the suffixes ".com," ".org," or ".net") provide immigration and visa-related information and services. The Department of State does not endorse, recommend, or sponsor any information or material on these other websites. The Department of State, KCC, or any other U.S. government entity will never ask you to send money via email or request that you reply with personal information. The only fee associated with the DV program will be paid at the time of your interview.U.S. Department of State"
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    Our road to America was paved in patience; which started with our first application in the green card lottery in December 1994, the American attorney who entered the lottery for our family on an annual basis sold us a ten year package for US$ 2,500. Yes it was before the world of the on-line applications and everyone used the good old postal service. Well I won’t bore you with a year by year account of waiting for the letter and later the email to arrive, other than to tell you on the 1stJune 2009 we finally received our green cards and citizenship followed on the 17thJuly 2014. This was a twenty year journey and looking back we realize how easily we could have given up, but are so thankful we stayed the course, as both our children completed their degrees in the USA and are now working for fortune 500 companies. While we all had a great life in South Africa, one for which we will always be grateful. Leaving your country of birth is never going to be an easy decision but government officials who are mostly corrupt and having to pay bribes to get things done made our decision so much easier. But most importantly, prospects for our children's future were dim. America provides an amazingly good life for the ordinary guy. Rich people live well everywhere, but what distinguishes America is that it provides a remarkably high standard of living for the average immigrant from South Africa. As they say a country is not judged by how it treats its most affluent citizens but by how it treats the average citizen. In America, you will immediately recognize that things are different. The South African immigrant will typically experiences emotions that alternate between wonder and delight. Here is a country where everything works: The roads are clean and paper-smooth; the highway signs are clear and accurate; the public toilets function properly; when you pick up the telephone, you get a dial tone (no stolen cables); you can even buy things from the store and then take them back for a full credit no questions asked. For an South African immigrant, the American supermarket is a thing to behold: endless aisles of every imaginable product, 50 different types of cereal, and multiple flavors of ice cream. A far cry from Hyper by the sea in Durban North We arrived in the middle of the financial crisis not a great time to arrive unemployed in a new country, but with the little we had saved, seller financing and a small bank loan (credit cards) , we were able to purchases a very small logistics company; we had no experience in logistics or the minefield of regulations. But with the normal South African commitment to hard work and the stark reality that we are on our own with no support of friends and family, we had to work harder, smarter and give better service than our competitors. The unintended benefit was that with the long hours and endless days of working, with no vacations, we had no time to feel home sick and our business grew beyond our expectations. What we have achieved in the last 7 years is far greater than what we achieved in the 20 years that we waited in South Africa. Our dream of America as the land of plenty has definitely come true. In closing to all the “future Americans” the wait is different for all of us but if you truly believe and stay the course your turn will come. Dreams do come true ask me.
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    I can't agree more with Oscar. The summer vacation is a relief to many who are waiting for October. I wish you all good luck. Shamus, keep visiting this site, it has a wealth of information and encouragement is galore. You will also know some of the SAUSA residents who are always very helpful such as Janneman, Superkruz, Malamut, SJ, Mua, Oscar, Bev, the list is long and new members keep coming on...Keep visiting
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    Hi BenCee We went through the same several times since 2003, it sucks, we feel for you guys! Our numbers were always in the 70's/80's, the rollercoaster ride of emotions plays havoc with everyone in family, BUT now that we are here (arrived March 2015), it was so worth it! Please keep your faith, keep applying (wherever), keep believing, keep being excited like before and your life will (when He believes the time is right) happen the way it is intended. Knowing that you will look back on this time as a painful learning, start changing the script right now. This is a lottery, a chance, something you had no control over. Your family will take guidance from you and your attitude to this, be strong in the lessons this is teaching or effects it will have on everyone. This spoken from experience. His Richest Blessings on your path forward!
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    As set by Hendie: Member ranking is based on the number of posts you have made, and you progress up through the ranks thus: Rookie - 0 posts (1 ) Junior Member - 1-19 posts (2 s) Member - 20-49 posts (3 s) Bronze Member - 50-99 posts (4 s) Silver Member - 100-249 posts (5 s) Gold Member - 250-499 posts (6 s) Platinum Member - 500-749 posts (7 s) Certified Addict! - 750-999 posts (8 s) Permanent Resident - 1000+ posts (9 s) Citizen - 2000+ posts (10 s)
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    Great info.... Thanks Janneman for your excellent post. You should be on the welcoming committee for all SA's coming to the USA. I had a little laugh about: Yes, it is human to feel lost in the beginning when: you go to a store and find (almost) nothing familiar on the shelves, In month 2, I dissolved into tears in Kroger because I could not find custard for my little girl. I looked to my right and saw another young lady in tears, I went up to her and asked if she was okay. In a South African accent she tearfully said she couldn't find the raisins...... It made us both laugh and realise we were quite normal and most of us will go through the same emotional and psychological processes.
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    People arrive in the States with different attitudes. Some expect everything to be so much better, bigger, greater (add superlative here.......) in the US. They have stars in their eyes like a newlywed couple. And then, when the honeymoon period is over, reality sets in and it's different. Not bad or unbearable, but different. One has to come to grips with that or the marriage will end in a divorce. There are those who arrive here with a highly skeptical and negative outlook in general, which begs the question: Why did they come here in the first place? Nothing seems to satisfy them. Americans are stupid. The food is crap. Americans are fat. American chocolate tastes horrible. (I might somewhat agree with that one though... ) They don't know how to braai. Why don't they like Marmite and Fish Paste? What's wrong with these people? And their football..! And then you get those who arrive on American soil knowing full well that the road ahead will not only be littered with challenges, but also opportunities. Those kind of people are known as realists. Yes, it is human to feel lost in the beginning when: you go to a store and find (almost) nothing familiar on the shelves, American English is confusing - more so if your home language is not English, heavy rains and snow - even hurricanes and tornadoes - are suddenly part of your life in some states, the workplace is different, having different priorities, attitudes and terminology, you miss family, friends and the familiarity of all things South African. The realist however will also realize that these "obstacles" are manageable and rather concentrate on the opportunities on offer. They will always remind themselves of the reasons why they packed their bags for the USA in the first place. Once you have made your bed, sleep in it. It's the only way. Obviously things don't always work out well for everybody, no matter how realistic or positive you are in outlook. Life can be a hard taskmaster and some people don't succeed for different reasons. There is nothing wrong with that. We are all human and have different needs - it doesn't make somebody a failure. Please be aware of the fact that emigrating will be the tough. It is very difficult to leave your comfort zones behind and it takes time to create - or get used to - new comfort zones. But please, give it a try. Don't give up. My father-in-law's late father (my grandpa-in-law, if there is such a term) always said: "You can run out of money but you must never run out of ideas". And remember, one has to adapt to the American way as soon as possible. I'm not saying that people have to adopt the American way, but they have to adapt to it. Nobody advises immigrants to give up their identity, but if they are going to be on the sidelines all the time they will never join in the game, and life is going to be miserable. Americans will accommodate us as best they can, but remember, they don't have to adapt to our ways. It's after all their country. We are the visitors.
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    Congratulations to all the people who got selected. I only found out about the DV Lottery a few months ago. So I'm hoping it continues so I can enter for 2016, probably going to need to apply until I go grey, or get the H1-B visa after a year of work experience after graduation. (Sorry about the ramble) H1-B -> Employment PR was always the plan. But that seems less probable than winning the lottery. Lol. I read these posts because I love seeing people win, it gives great hope. For those who've given up, keep trying, maybe winning will come at the time best suited for you, we are all eager but don't look at how this will affect us. Things happen at the right time, contrary to what others believe.