Karina Vargas: How to donate to a fund set up for teenager paralyzed in drive-by shooting

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Karina Sartiaguin Vargas.
This week's cover story, "Bullet. Proof.," tells the story of Karina Sartiaguin Vargas, who was shot three years ago outside Aurora Central High School. The bullet wasn't meant for her, but it hit her anyway, paralyzing her from the belly button down. Because Karina was undocumented, she had a hard time getting medical care beyond what was necessary to save her life.

Since then, she's connected with an immigration attorney, who is helping her apply for a green card. The attorney and her paralegal also set up a fundraiser.

The fundraiser kicked off with an event back in late September at the upscale Edge Bar inside the Four Seasons Hotel in downtown Denver. So far, they've raised about $5,600 in cash and gotten several offers from builders to make additional modifications to Karina's family home in Aurora. Karina hopes to spend some of the money on physical therapy and other treatment. The nineteen-year-old believes that with the right therapies, she'll be able to walk again.

Donations are still being accepted through the Denver Center for Crime Victims website. Choose the "Emergency Fund" option and write "Karina" in the Comments section.

But although she can use the help, Karina is adamant that she's not just looking for charity. She recently began attending an alternative school where students earn credits online and she's determined to get her diploma and find a job. As she wrote in an essay for school, "I'm ready for what the year has to come and I'm just ready to get it over with!"

For more about Karina, read our cover story, "Bullet. Proof."


Follow me on Twitter @MelanieAsmar or e-mail me at melanie.asmar@westword.com


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20 comments
almasdreamworld
almasdreamworld

I had the honor to meet Karina, and she is an amazing hard worker. Even though she has been through a lot she keeps fighting, not only for herself but for the community, that community that falls under all of us. She only wants more protection and a better place for all. It should not matter if she was born in the United States or not, she deserves to be treated like a human (not disrespected by those individuals who call her names only because she was born somewhere else). One needs to remember we do not own the land, the land owns us, because once we die we will all become dirt. I wish her and her family the best, and if there is anyway I can help I will be there in a heart beat. God bless her!

ohdannyhi
ohdannyhi

BLAH BLAH BLAH. Everyone on here commenting saying hurtful and bullshit about MY SISTER can suck it. I appreciate all the help and anyone who knows here has ONLY good things to say about her. The laws will change cause this shouldn't be happening to NO ONE! Immigration laws in the U.S. will change as long as my sister is in that wheel chair cause right now she only deserves the BEST help even though she is an 'immigrant'.

Erica Rosenthal
Erica Rosenthal

What I find totally ironic is you all think I am the hateful one yet you are all the ones using hateful, harmful words. Words that I would never say. Look at all the hate you are spreading. Why would you call someone you don't even know the c word? You do that because you are the entitled one.

Sterling Meeks
Sterling Meeks

Westword isn't pushing anything it on you. As much as you are entitled to your opinion, Westword reserves the right to publish whatever the fuck they want on their website or feeds of their social media accounts. You have the CHOICE to either read further or move on to another thread to pollute with your whiny, self-aggrandizing comments full of unjustifiable moral superiority. Have a tissue, cunt.

Sterling Meeks
Sterling Meeks

It is clear that Erica here is obsessed with her immigration status despite her claim to the contrary of a desire for the laws to be changed. It's as if that somehow this woman's issues would all magically disappear if she would just "go back to where she came from." That's the prevailing attitude of otherwise self-entitled, self-aggrandizing gentrifying "liberals."

Sterling Meeks
Sterling Meeks

Translation: "I really hate to say it." = "I really enjoy rubbing it in since I am a spoiled rotten self-entitled Lamebook DWEEB."

Dale Sawin
Dale Sawin

either way,,,she is still one of the most beautiful young ladies Westword has ever had on their cover....wish her and her family all the best.

Claudia Kaplan Mishell
Claudia Kaplan Mishell

Very sad - she deserves the same empathy and kindness as anyone else that has had a tragedy like this - legally here or not. She did not choose to come here; but this is her home and I think of her as a human being above all else.

Orlando Marquez
Orlando Marquez

Your mother and father had the worst April fools prank ever. (Your birthday) Erica Rosenthal. (Born april 1st) only a privileged FOOL thinks like you. F&% $ you and your sense of entitlement.

Erica Rosenthal
Erica Rosenthal

I did read the entire article which is how I know she is a positive person and yes I know she was brought here at the age of 1 but it was still illegal. If it's just my choice to donate then why is Westword pushing it on us. Why did they need to re-post it. I wish I could donate to everyone who deserved it. I really would

Stacey Rogers
Stacey Rogers

Have you spoken to her? You seem to have many opinions on how life should be and how she feels. Yes, you are entitled to your opinions, but this post asked if you read the article (I actually did this very morning) and the source to donate to her cause IF YOU WANT to; it didn't solicit your sanctimonious assertions. She came here as a very small child; it wasn't her choice to stay and she was shot when she was 16; still a minor.

Erica Rosenthal
Erica Rosenthal

And you can stay ignorant. I am also entitled to my opinion just like you are. My parents have nothing to do with it. I also don't think this girl is miserable. I think she is doing all that she can.

Channing Henson
Channing Henson

Erica, we could all do without your blowhard opinions. I'm sure they're just based on the bullshit your parents taught you, but just cram it for god's sake. No need to pile on the misery of this beautiful person.

Erica Rosenthal
Erica Rosenthal

And that's exactly how it should be! Bad shit happens to good people ALL the time. You can prevent it, you can't make it go away. YOU cannot control it. That is called reality. I am not saying I agree with the laws. I think they need to be fixed and changed but that probably won't happen either.

Sterling Meeks
Sterling Meeks

Good. The moment when you become the latest statistic, we'll just reply, "That's life. Suck it up."

Erica Rosenthal
Erica Rosenthal

My heart goes out to her. It's very tragic and as much as I really really hate to say it, she is an illegal immigrant period. This Country has a lot of problems and life just isn't fair.

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