LaCausaCaravana - Join the movement

$20,605 of $52,000 goal

Raised by 182 people in 6 months
Created October 27, 2018
LasMaestras Center & OMDR Committee
on behalf of Brendan Haynes Cassidy
Growing caravans of refugees, fleeing government-induced poverty, threats by drug cartels, and sexual and domestic violence,  are building momentum, headed north by the thousands toward the U.S. border.  Elders, women, and children are expected to arrive within weeks.  Otay Mesa Detention Resistance Committee (OMDR) https://www.facebook.com/DetentionResistance/  and the American Friends Service Commitee (AFSC) are collaborating with other organizations to prepare for their arrival.  For this reason, this plea is highly time-sensitive.   We ask for your support today.  We ask you to give generously to assist Otay Mesa Detention Resistance in assisting this rising movement of refugees.


As some of you may know, on September 15 and 16 of this year, some forty mujeres coming from the four directions and across four generations,  participated in "Un Llanto Colectivo," a public outcry of theatrical and ceremonial resistance against ICE and in support of  refugees detained along the Tijuana-San Diego border.    https://www.facebook.com/unLlantoColectivo/  

As artists, actors, writers, danzantes & sahumadoras, teachers & activists, we were utterly changed by our experience, in San Diego, working collectively with one another and the organizers of the Otay Mesa Detention Resistance Committee.* Observing OMDR's dedication, commitment, and tireless efforts to meet the ever-growing needs of detainees and their families, required us to look at our own lives -- its privileges and our respons(e)abilities toward nuestros pueblos del sur.   

Weeks before the protest, some of us --  joined OMDR to meet with young people who had traveled "la bestia" and "las caravanas," but were forced to remain in Tijuana, unable to qualify for asylum on the U.S. side of the border.   We saw that they were no more than the age of many of our undergrads; some already mothers.  They were single young men (some two-spirit) and fathers forced to leave their children.   Everyone had stories much older than their years.

PERFORMA-PROTESTA - September 13-16.
Most of us had arrived late Thursday night.  We spent one 12-hour day  on Friday in training (rehearsal) and  on Saturday in protest at the Downtown ICE Detention Center.  But Sunday,  Mexican Independence Day (9/16),  was especially impactful, when we took our "Llanto" to  Otay Mesa Detention Center, a desolate location  25 miles southeast of San Diego.   

We entered the surrounding area ceremonially, carrying the sacred fire, with warrior drums holding down the pace of the procession.  We followed the staffs of our female elders, Elvira Colorado and Hortencia Colorado,  and the footsteps and birdsongs of  Stan Rodríguez of the local Kumeyaay.  Refugee testimonios  were then rendered theatrically by our cadre of teatristas, accompanied by a coro of students and community, culminating in our collective outcry with every hope that the detainees inside the Center could hear us.  Then the call finally came in, where we were able to hear the smuggled voices of detainees (reverberating through huge speaker system) thanking us for our offering. "Compañeras," one man called us and the word resounded in each of us with new and resolute meaning. 
              "You are not alone," we promised back. "No están solos."   

And so, in keeping with that promise, we have initiated this fundraising campaign to show these detainees and the entire refugee movement that we walk in solidarity with them.

As the ICE grows detention centers, we need to meet the growing needs of refugees. 

Funds are needed to locate space and facilities to house and serve elders, women and children first, and all those that follow.  Familias need  diapers, food, clothing, fuel, drinkable water, sanitation facilities.  Escalating legal  and parole fees need to be paid, as OMDR helps detainees navigate a ruthless and profiteering incarceration system.  Once released, families need support to transition into some kind of livable life here in the U.S.

Please pass the word to your list-servs and compatriots of like-and-open mind.

Why $52,000? 
52 is a sacred number in the MesoAmerican calendrical system. It is the time of completion (the binding of the years) and great transition. 

                      Might these times of chaos come to an end.
                      Might we light a New Fire for a new beginning.  

It seemed a fitting amount to strive for.

gracias/thank you/ tlazohcamati

Cherríe Moraga & Celia Herrera Rodríguez  (Las Maestras Center for Xicana Indigenous Thought and Art Practice -UC Santa Barbara);  Roberto Hernández (Chicano & Chicana Studies, CSU San Diego);  Ymoat Luna  and Jeff Valenzuela (OMDR); and, El Llanto Colectivo:
Angelica Rodríguez, Jade Power Sotomayor, Felicia Montes; Elvira Colorado, Hortensia Colorado; Maya Gómez, Irene Lara, Jennie Luna; Nancy Morales, Mariela Aguilar, Diana Pérez, Patricia Ramírez, Angie García, Lexxus Edison, Cristina Frías, Vickie Grise, Estela Jiménez, Doris Difarnecio,  Elvia Rubalcava, Mari Infante, Andrea Thom, Alice Joanou, Cetanzi Montes, Marlene Beltrán Cuzuhtin, Karina Muniz, Angelina Borbón, Alondra Sierra, Chil, Vicky Vértiz, Vreni Michelini Castillo, María Figueroa, Fedra Ramírez Olivares, Stephany Rubio and others.

* OMDR    https://www.facebook.com/DetentionResistance/  is a member of Pueblo sin Fronteras, San Diego.   https://www.facebook.com/PuebloSF  

For further information, please contact OMDR: otaymesadetentionresistance [at] gmail [dot] com
or  Las Maestras Center:  lasmaestrasucsb [at] gmail [dot] com
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Many people of you have inquired exactly where La Causa Caravana campaign funds are going. Otay Mesa Detention Resistance Organization has presented the following in response.

Due to the immense need both in the US Detention Centers and on the ground in Tijuana, OMDR needs to be strategic in its use of monetary resources. The proposal is as follows:

30% goes to the changing day-to-day needs of the Caravanistas and their direct support in Tijuana. OMDR gives autonomy to those OMDR members and other trusted volunteers doing the direct work in deciding exactly how these funds should be spent. Some examples can be: health supplies, shelving, tents, tarps, supplies for children, drinking water, non perishable and perishable food, cooking supplies, blankets, backpacks, among others.

30% goes to supporting long-term grassroots infrastructure in the border region, whether it is in the United States or Tijuana. Presently, this funding will go to supporting the Enclave Caracol, or another institutional location that will be rented in order to have a staging area to support migrants and volunteers

30% goes to supporting the material needs of Detention Center detainees: some examples will be: commissary, stamps and supplies for letter writing campaigns, bus fare to get to a sponsor’s house, prepaid cell phones, backpacks with basic travel essentials, such as teddy bears, soap, razors, deodorant, towels, antibacterial gel, feminine hygiene products, diapers and wipes, food and travel cash.

10% goes to organizational support--P.O. Box payment and keys, domain names and website fees, food for volunteers, reimbursing people taxed crossing supplies into Tijuana.

Thanks to everyone who has contributed and please keep passing the word.

(ALSO PLEASE NOTE: Anyone wishing to make a TAX-DEDUCTIBLE donation before the close of the year, please contact us.)
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Thank you for all your support and contribution to this much needed work on the ground.

Here is more of our work, check out our website.

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Jennie Nelson on activism, actions, and caravan support along the San Diego side of the border, including OMDR work supporting and aiding those in the detention system.
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U.S. orgs leading caravan aid efforts in Tijuana despite hurdles - San Diego CityBeat
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$20,605 of $52,000 goal

Raised by 182 people in 6 months
Created October 27, 2018
LasMaestras Center & OMDR Committee
on behalf of Brendan Haynes Cassidy
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