How do you begin to help when someone needs everything? How can you choose what to give when they have next to nothing?
I felt this sense of helplessness when I met Veronica and her six children. She had newly arrived family from Matamoros, Mexico, and were being served by the Sisters at San Felipe de Jesus in Brownsville, Texas. They had claimed asylum at the beginning of May after being forced to flee their home, fleeing extortionist threats from the local cartel.
Failure to comply with extortion already resulted in the disappearance of her husband, and according to her neighbors who warned Verónica not to return home, their oldest son, 13 year old Armando, would have been next. Verónica and her children left town with nothing, arriving at the border solely with the clothes on their backs.
Currently living in a dilapidated trailer behind a Brownsville taqueria, Verónica and her family need everything. They need food, clothes, medicine, and a new home.
So for this family, we saw fit to help them address all their needs – as they come – with a $500 boost in resources.
Verónica said that the first purchase she would make was medicine for her second youngest, Jesús (3), who is dealing with a rash believed to be caused from sleeping on the trailer floor.
It could also empower Verónica to buy supplies for one of her few sources of income – the sweet fruit and candy treats that she served to us when we visited the family at their makeshift home. She sells them for $5 in the neighborhood, and they are delicious. Ours were provided free of charge. a heartwarming gesture from a family that has little to give.
Bill is a social studies teacher at Forest Lake Area High School, living in Robbinsdale, Minnesota. A native Minnesotan, Bill spent a year in Mexico, teaching English and becoming fluent in Spanish. The opportunity to make an impact on the issues happening on the southern border has been a time he’ll always cherish. When not in the classroom, petting his cats, or writing for his blog, you can find him in the wrestling ring as the Revolutionary Bill Williams.