A family living in Warrnambool has been told they may face deportation to Singapore in weeks.
Rajasegaran Manikam, his wife Premawathy Balasupramaniam and their children Vanisre, 18, and Vela, 8, moved to Australia in 2013 seeking a better life.
Ms Balasupramaniam was offered a job working at Florence Collins in Warrnambool in 2015 and the family moved to the city.
"We fell in love with Warrnambool, this is a beautiful place," Mr Manikam said.
Mr Manikam was born in Singapore but has Indian heritage and said opportunities for his children there were limited.
Vanisre is in year 12 at Brauer College and dreams of studying medicine, a dream that would be crushed if the family is deported.
"In Singapore in a year there will be one or two Indian students who get a position at university," he said.
"If we go back she will have to start year 10 again and I think her fire will just die."
Mr Manikam spent $150,000 moving his family to Australia and more than $50,000 attempting to obtain permanent residency status.
However, that bid has been rejected because Mr Manikam has the early stages of kidney disease.
Mr Manikam said he had no symptoms of the disease and with the help of medication and a vegetarian diet he has increased the function of his kidney from 20 to 47 per cent.
He said he was heartbroken that his condition was threatening his children's futures.
"When my kidney fails I will not go on dialysis and I will not get a kidney transplant," Mr Manikam said.
"I don't want to take money from the Commonwealth."
When the family's visa expires on August 21 the couple will no longer be allowed to work.
Mr Manikam has sourced letters of support from his doctor, Member for Wannon Dan Tehan, Father Lawrie O'Toole and a number of other community members.
His daughter has started a petition online and the family is in the process of seeking assistance from Immigration Minister David Coleman.
Thousands of people had signed the petition just hours after it was posted on Monday night.
The Standard was also inundated with pleas from students at Brauer College to help their friend.
You can sign the petition here.
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