Paty speaks with Villano in Juquila
Last we wrote, back in August, we shared photos of our hard work to make sure that hunger is not a reason that the communities of Metlatónoc, Guerrero, Mexico are selling their daughters into marriage. Your support, particularly those who are recurring monthly donors, made it possible to quickly get emergency food baskets- beans, rice, corn flour, chiles, cooking oil and more- to the 175 neediest families.
Once we met those immediate needs, we brought our staff back home for their safety, during which time we started preparing workshop activities to get back to the mountain, continue our work in the communities of Metlatónoc and Yucunduta and extend our work to a new community: San Juan Huexoapa.
I am over the moon to share with you that on October 30th, Paty and Benito, our facilitators, drove the 9 hours back up to Metlatónoc and restarted socially-distanced workshops!
Right off the bat, we were met with great news- check out the photograph above of Paty talking with Villano, the elected leader of Juquila, who proudly told her that since before the pandemic, when his town officially ended the sale of girls and women into marriage, not a single girl has been sold! There have been 6 marriages in the town in this time, and not a single one involved a girl or her sale. We celebrate this incredible feat of the town, in the midst of a pandemic, at that.
What has the team been up to since getting back to the communities? Here is a glimpse from the field:
Nov 7: Our team launches a training for local women´s rights activists so that they have the tools to end child marriage in the multiple communities from which they come.
Nov 9: Paty and Benito meet with the Juquila preeschool director, a long-time partner of our work, and he tells them he “is very surprised because in Juquila, girls and women are no longer sold, which is proof of the great work that Yo quiero Yo puedo is doing and its magnificent results”.
Nov 10: Our team officially launches our program in the new town of San Juan Huexoapa! They meet with Bernardino, the local leader, and then hold the first educational session with women, inviting them to join the forthcoming workshop. Check out all those masks! We greeted each participant with a mask and showed her how to wear it properly.
Nov 17: Paty and Benito hold a strategy session with the local commissary in Yucunduta to define the best way to safely carry out the workshops in the midst of Covid-19. Look at all that social distance in the photo!
Nov 19: To continue with the launch in San Juan Huexoapa, our team meets with the secondary school Parents´ committee because we have seen firsthand the importance of building a school community that doesn´t tolerate child marriage.
The work is just beginning, and every time I get a new Whatsapp message from Paty and Benito with photos and update I feel such deep joy. I hope this mini “field log” has made you has excited as we are about the sustainability of the impact your donation has made possible, and the way we keep expanding it, ceaselessly, despite the challenging conditions.
Shoshana and the whole Yo quiero Yo puedo team
1st educational session in San Juan Huexoapa
Strategy session with commissary in Yucunduta