The crisis unfolding on the US-Mexico border is not new. It is the result of a decades-long neglect of an oppressed and impoverished community, the community of migrants and deportees. Last year Via International launched Via Migrante, an initiative to serve this burgeoning community in Tijuana. This is what we have learned:
Like in any other community, natural leaders can be found in the community of migrants and deportees. With the proper support and access to even modest resources, these leaders can become their community's own best resource. Across the last 12 months, we have helped to convene leadership groups at three Tijuana locations:
At each location key leaders have exercised initiative and responsibility to ensure that the most vulnerable members of their own communities receive the nutrition they need. These leaders have served as catalysts, mobilizing the leadership of others and self-organizing to provide meal services to their fellow migrants and deportees.
These leaders from within the community of migrants and deportees are RUNNING THEIR OWN KITCHENS
Workers in a "Cocina Popular por y para Migrantes,” as a Spanish-speaker might say.
We have now connected these teams to Via staff based in Tijuana, and to "promotoras" (community leaders) affiliated with our sister organization, Los Niños de Baja California, who are experts in "nutrición y ecología" (nutrition and ecology). When wholesale foodstuffs are delivered at cost to these teams of leaders, they can provide hundreds of basic but nutritious meals each day to Tijuana's most vulnerable population, the population of recently arrived migrants and deportees (los más recién llegados), the kinds of people you have been reading about and seeing in the news.
Each of the migrant kitchens can provide a basic but nutritious meal to 200 people
for a TOTAL COST of UNDER $500.
THAT'S $2.45 PER MEAL.
Here are some items that these kitchens have been trained to prepare from the "Nutrition and Ecology" menu:
The great news is that this price includes all of the following:
Here's how it works:
Your donation will not merely feed someone who is hungry. It will help build leadership within the community of migrants and deportees, which is what Via International is all about.
We join with Roberto (see the video below) to say "Gracias" for your generous support of the MIGRANT KITCHENS OF TIJUANA!
For the entire team at Via International,
Via International | Promoting Sustainable Community Development
Via Cafe | Connecting People Across Borders