Brownsville Border Project: Update and Pictures

Volunteers travel to Matamoros one weekend a month to cook and serve dinner and teach at the Escuelita school in the camp on Sundays.

Organizer Halley Ortiz describes the Brownsville Border Project,

“Anthony Chapple and I started the project after going on a trip to Matamoros with St. Michael’s in August.  We were so moved by the conditions there that we felt like this was something that St. David’s could make a meaningful contribution to on more than just a one-time basis. We went as a group from St. David’s in September and October. We have trips scheduled already for November and December. We are hoping that some of the people who go on trips with us will be willing to lead trips of their own as we move into 2020.

It’s important to understand that the folks living on the bridge are those who are following all the rules. Asylum seekers are detained on the US side when they first make their application. Following that, they are returned to the bridge to wait, often for months, for their court dates and an opportunity to make a claim for asylum. Keep in mind that they have often sold everything they own to afford to even get to the border, so they have no food, no money, and no way to get a job as most are not Mexican citizens.

There is no running water, camp showers are few and far between, and there are 4 port-a-potties for 700-900 people. “

In the photographs below some faces are blurred to protect the safety of any asylum-seeking people who are fleeing persecution in their home countries. If you would like to get involved contact Halley Ortiz. To sign-up for on-going activity updates and to receive notices for assistance needed, please access and complete: The Border Trip Interest Form

St. David’s October trip to Matamoros

This trip included a volunteer and food prep coordination effort with Café Divine. The following people have made the trip from St. David’s:  Joy and Ben Philpott, Adrian and Trey Buchanan, Laura Sajbel, Beth Hudson, Katie Parker, and Vance Tilton. Chef Ray would like to recognize the help provided by Michael Abels, Ben E. Keith Food Service, and Segovia Produce.

September trip to Matamoros

Volunteers created lesson plans with key phrases in Spanish, collected and sorted supplies for school, and traveled from Texas to teach the children at the Escuelita school in the Matamoros camp.

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