Hecate Society is a QTPOC* centric, femme* & youth-led, art and media collective that aims to elevate the stories of immigrants and refugees traveling to the so-called United States while simultaneously engaging in mutual aid, community organizing and coalition building inside of refugee communities. Our intention is to support refugee-run autonomous spaces in border towns and communities with high concentrations of refugees and migrants by providing support around housing, food, media, and legal aid. We emphasize working with political refugees and refugee activists who are actively engaging in direct action against the government and organizing in their communities, whether it’s in detention, in Tijuana, in the US or back in their homelands. We support LGBTQ+ and vulnerable populations within the refugee community throughout their entire transition, pre, during and post detention processes in hopes that individuals can escape deathly situations and build powerful new movements within refugee communities that will fight against the US-funded pillars of injustice that are creating unlivable situations for millions of people.
We aim to create a revolutionary paradigm for building collective power and healing trauma by using art and media. We hope to use Hecate Society as a platform that can bring decentralized support to help empower and give back agency to QTPOC and femme voices to produce their own narratives and bring their own voices and stories to the forefront. We hope to acknowledge and raise awareness around how the exodus is directly intertwined with indigenous sovereignty and climate change. We believe that media and art can be used not only to reframe problematic narratives and build alternative ones, but also, as a form of therapy, to heal identity and community based trauma. The content we produce is created through a mutual exchange of ideas, using casual interviews that also serve as therapeutic and healing moments that can help us and the interviewees process traumatic experiences and beautiful experiences alike. When we build our content, we are building deeper friendships. We aim to capture the totality of people’s humanity, suffering and most importantly, their resistance.
Our biggest team is on the ground in Tijuana but we also have members of the collective currently working out of Chicago, Minneapolis, Oakland and Italy.
*QTPOC: Queer, Trans, People of Color
*Femme: We use the word femme as an inclusive term that includes all trans, cis and non-binary people whom identify as femme
Find us on Social Media!
Colectivo de Casas Santuarios:
On the ground in Tijuana we are helping to build a support network for a cooperative of refugee-run autonomous safe houses called “Colectivo de Casas Santuarios.” The safe houses in this cooperative include:
Casa de Luz:
A LGBTQ+ group of refugees that formed while walking north from Honduras in order to protect and support each other from rampant homophobia in Mexico and their home territories alike. The group has also taken in families with special needs kids that were traveling at the very end of the caravans and in dire need of a group to travel with and housing support at the border. Casa de Luz is in a safer neighborhood of Tijuana father away from immediate danger and hostility which provides security and support to the most vulnerable populations within the refugee community.
Casa Contra Viento y Marea:
A group of refugees and accomplices whose roots began while traveling north in the November caravan together and continued as they did their 6-day occupation in which hundreds of refugees refused to be evicted and placed in insecure and corrupt shelters administered by the Mexican government and against the interests of those who lived there. Once the occupation ended many members from the warehouse stayed in Tijuana to organize within the refugee community or were rejected asylum. The particular group from the warehouse that organized this collective living space can also be found working at El Comedor Contra Viento y Marea in Zona Norte, Tijuana on a daily basis.
Comedor y Jardin Contra Viento y Marea:
After the closing of the Contra Viento y Marea, Benito Juarez Warehouse, refugee shelter, organizers from the collective desperately needed to find a way to feed people. Impromptu kitchens in apartment complexes, street corners and tent cities was not sustainable and people were starving. Organizers of the collective worked together to find and rent an industrial kitchen in El Centro, Tijuana. The space opened early February, just two weeks after the warehouse occupation ended. The center is run by Contra Viento y Marea collective members, refugee organizers that are committed to keeping the kitchen running and thriving for the following years as more caravanerxs come to live or pass through Tijuana. The kitchen serves around 200 people a day for both lunch and dinner. Refugees and anyone else who could not afford to eat otherwise is welcome in the space to eat and take donations from the rooftop donation center that generally has clothes, toiletries, medicines, blankets, tents, childrens toys and shoes available. Amongst the kitchen and donation center, we have a rooftop edible garden that has been growing for the past couple of months as the compost system, worm bins, vegetables and herbs are beginning to thrive. Contravientoymareatj.com
Art & Media:
With our art and media, we aim to take power from the oppressive and put it back into the hands of the oppressed. We believe that media and art can be used not only to reframe problematic narratives and build alternative ones, but also, as a form of therapy, to heal identity and community based trauma. The content we produce is created through a mutual exchange of ideas, using stories that also serve as therapeutic and healing moments that can help process traumatic and beautiful experiences alike. Our work captures the totality of people’s humanity, suffering and most importantly, their resistance.
We hope to use our art & media as a way to bring decentralized support to help empower and give back agency to refugees, particularly LGBTQ+ femme and youth voices to produce their own narratives and bring their own voices and stories to the forefront. We want our art and media to help bring awareness to the militarized US + Israel fueled and funded genocide of refugees everywhere and in particular those coming up from Central America to Tijuana in caravans. We like to lend our skills and knowledge around art and media to help refugee organized collectives build platforms to fundraise off of and build momentum with.
Where will your donated money go?
If you would like to specifically support one of these projects listed above, please indicate so in a note with your donation. Otherwise, we normally dedicate our crowd sourced money to the most urgent needs that our teams have. Whether it may be hiring a lawyer so that someone doesn’t get deported, help one of the safe houses pay their monthly rent or buy a mother a phone hours before she turns herself in so that she has somewhere to go once on the other-side. We are constantly navigating working in crisis mode and thinking long term. We have received a few grants this year that we are extremely grateful for to make some of our longer term projects function. However, it is YOUR support that we receive here that make our day to day functions happen and we could not exist without it.
Physical Donations + Contact Info
If you have any questions please email us at [email redacted]. Visit our website at hecatesociety.org. To donate through Venmo, @tjrefugee-support.
Muchas Gracias! Thank you for your support!
- Josh Scollins
- Caroline Spurgin
- ethan bernick
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