Chano Banegas Memorial Services

As GOJoven International  and Public Health Institute members, friends and colleagues, we are profoundly sad to learn of the tragic death of our dear colleague and GOJoven Alumni Fellow, Octaciano (Chano) Banegas Galeas. Chano passed away in the desert on June 28, 2018, during the treacherous journey from Honduras to the United States in search of a better life for himself and his family. Chano came from the small town of Tocoa, Colón, on the Atlantic coast of Honduras and, in 2009, became a Fellow of the Public Health Institute’s Youth Leadership in Sexual and Reproductive Health Program (GOJoven International).

We always admired the energy, dedication and commitment shown by Chano to the people of his community with limited opportunities, including the Garifuna population, women, youth and children. He was a talented young leader with a sense of curiosity and adventure; and wanted to do his part to transform his community, his society, his country and the region. It pains us to learn that, despite all his achievements and his deep commitment to his country, he faced the need to migrate to the United States to improve his economic opportunities and help support his family and tragically perished during this perilous trip. Chano is survived by his wife Isabel Cáceres, young son Fernando Josué, and mother, among other family members.  The wake, funeral and burial were held in the San Isidro neighborhood of his home town of Tocoa on Monday August 13th and Tuesday August 14th.

Chano’s family held local fundraising drives to help cover the exorbitant cost (approximately USD 8,000) to return his body home to Honduras from the US, however they were unable to raise sufficient funds and had to take out personal loans.  The money raised will help Chano’s family pay off the bank debt they incurred to bring Chano home and pay him homage, as well as help his wife and four-year-old son to cover basic expenses as they recover from their loss. 

We invite you to read more about the celebration of Chano’s life in this GOJoven International blog  or in this article from local Honduran news. Thank you very much, on behalf of Chano’s family and community, for your contribution.
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Fundraising team (3)

Katherine Sham 
Berkeley, CA
Susanna Moore 
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