In this appeal, we conclude that the subject children, facing the possibility of being separated from their only parent and returned to their native country where gang members have threatened their lives, may seek to have their natural mother appointed as their guardian as a first step toward obtaining legal residency in the United States.
The subject children, Samuel D.H., Marisol N.H., and Silvia J.H., ages 19, 18, and 16, respectively, were born in El Salvador to Miriam A.G. (hereinafter the mother) and Leonidas H. (hereinafter the father). According to the allegations made in support of the petitions, the father drank often, and he verbally and physically abused the mother. When Samuel was just four years old, the mother left the father, taking the children with her to her mother’s home. The father never again had meaningful contact with the children; he did not provide them with any financial support, give them any birthday or Christmas presents, or show any interest in them.