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Do you know about “The 72” migrant shelter in Tenosique, Tabasco, México?
Help is urgently needed.
In Tenosique, Tabasco, in southeast México, there is an old train station on the railroad line that goes up to Coatzacoalcos, Veracruz. The train known as “the beast” stops here, sometimes for just a few minutes and other times for a few hours, so that migrants from Central America can climb aboard. Most of them have come into Mexico from Guatemala and have walked for hours in heat that is often higher than 40°C (104° F) in this region. Some people come into the country without money because what they had has been taken by the people who smuggle migrants, thieves or Mexican authorities who often engage in extortion. They come with blisters on their feet, and they’re usually hungry, thirsty, and tired after nights without sleep, but share a deep hope of getting to the U.S.A. Some have crossed the border before and know what the road has in store for them. Others are traveling for the first time and only know the distant land as a dream that other people have shared with them.
Near the railroad tracks is “the 72” shelter for migrants. It is named after 72 migrants killed in the state of Tamaulipas last year. Friar Tomás runs this hostel, a place for migrants to eat, drink, bathe and rest, where information on human rights and legal rights is available. The goal is to welcome the people who come to the door and make them feel at home so that when they leave, they can find their way northward with the dignity of a human being with rights. Nobody is illegal just for having crossed a border. Since when is it illegal to have dreams or stave off hunger? Sin when is it illegal to try to support your children and live in dignity without being subject to violence and abuses…?
“The 72” is a mother who hugs her children, her brothers and sisters, and then sets them free. The shelter has been in operation for a year. It’s still under construction and stays afloat with scarce donations. That’s why help is urgently needed to buy many things: ointment for curing blisters; medicine for treating fever, diarrhea, sore muscles and headaches; soap for bathing; disinfectants for purifying water; clothes, shoes and socks for men. Funds are also needed to pay the high costs of electricity, gas, and wideband internet rental. Projects now contemplated include preparing informational booklets on human rights and the risks of the road, as well as painting murals that provide information and also beautify the shelter. There is a need for volunteers willing to work in the infirmary, provide psychological and legal help, prepare meals, and more. If you can help or if you know someone who would like to help, please contact us at: Fray Tomas Gonzales Castillo la72.direccion [at] gmail.com
Donations can be sent to: Centro de Derechos Humanos del Usumacinta, 70000789656 sucursal 0306 swit BNMXMXMM CLAVE INTERBANCARIA 002807700007896569
Facebook: Ayuda Migrante Coordinación de Voluntarios
ccoordvmigracion [at] live.com.mx