Please Help Our Migrante Sisters & Brothers

Since I traveled down to Tijuana Mexico on December 26th, 2018 to cook for migrant refugees seeking asylum in the United States, many of you have been following my journey on Instagram and Facebook.  As the number of people in the camps decreased and the largest one eventually closed, by default, the emergency need was over, and the World Central Kitchen in Tijuana, halted its emergency operation. During my time working in the kitchen, I had the God-Given opportunity to work beside and develop close relationships with many gorgeous souls including five brave migrant refugees; a woman from Nicaragua, a man from Guatemala, two women from El Salvador, and a man from Honduras.  Each of them had been living in various shelters in Tijuana along with other people who traveled together from various countries in the caravan which arrived in November 2018. The first who came to work for us is a man from Guatemala. Shortly after, he spoke of a woman from Nicaragua who lived at the same shelter who also needed a job. She too joined the team quickly. Some of the shelters would not allow people to come and go preventing them from being able to find work which would lead to jobs and proper housing.  Others imposed early curfews. The shelter that these two people lived at, started evicting people. Some of the people were directed to rent rooms nearby. Most of them didn’t have money to pay for this shelter, and the rooms that were available for the migrants to rent were not in very liveable conditions. When the rain came, so did the flooding, electrical sparks in sitting water, and power outages. One cold and rainy night, the woman from Nicaragua received a call that two of her friends had to leave the rented room because they had been flooded out.  Without shelter, they were stranded in the street in the pouring rain with all of their belongings.  One of my sisters on the team drove out to pick these women up, and that was the night that I gained three temporary roommates.   At this time, we hired two more women on.  I spent time and money finding safe-ish places for them live near the kitchen so that they could get to work easily.

While working at the kitchen, I also had the pleasure of meeting an extraordinary human, a Mexican citizen, who had been living in one of the same shoddy hotel rooms that I rented for the ladies down the block with his wife and one year old daughter. We hired him on as well, and he quickly became part of the family.  I soon learned his traumatic story. He and his family had also suffered pain, violence, and loss in Tepoztlan when he had to make the awful choice between the life of his daughter or the paperwork to the house his grandfather had left him after he passed away.  Of course he chose his daughter over the paperwork to the house, but has since been living hand to mouth trying as hard as he can to raise them up and out of this terrible situation.

After the closing of the kitchen, I knew that my work with my new friends was not done.  How could it be?  Two of them have been in detention for about a month now attempting to legally seek asylum in the United States.  Everyone else is standing by in need of new jobs so that they can afford housing and be able to send money home to their families left behind in the violence.  Many of you know that I am not only a chef, but I am also a shamanic healer and reiki master, and someone who has made it her mission to be of service to those without advocates, without voices suffering because they think that it is the only way.  We know better, don't we? 

Since the closing, I moved my remaining friends to Las Playas of Tijuana (The Beaches of Tijuana).  I have transitioned into assisting these beautiful humans on a full-time basis providing them housing, food, job hunts, counseling, shamanic healing sessions, reiki sessions, food medicine, and lots of mama love.  Two of our friends are currently being held as prisoners in detention centers as they wait for their interviews and cases to be heard as if they are criminals. I know first hand that they are not. They have fled their respective countries from extreme violence including rape, extortion, torture, death threats and attempts. Some of these people have been hunted and chased, their children and families threatened. Some of these people watched their wives, sons, daughters, and parents get murdered. Some of these people barely escaped death with visible scars that make you shake when you see them because you can feel the violence that occured in that spot let alone the scars that are unseen.  Even though alone I cannot change the processes of the various governments who deny these human beings a chance at a safe life, I can still be of service to them as they are creating an enormous ancestral shift, removing themselves directly from cycles of oppression and violence.  It is my mission to help the collective "them" succeed however I am able. 

It has been three weeks since we moved to the beach.  During this time, I have been working with them on a daily basis assisting them through illnesses,  looking for jobs, providing them with food, healing, and lots of love.  After evaluating the individual traumas of these people, and now dealing with the "Remain in Mexico" policy, I have decided to create a family healing home for 6-8 adults and one toddler in Las Playas de Tijuana.  The house will become a loving and therapeutic home and refuge, and will be subject to rotation as people rise up and out of their situation and onto better lives.

During my volunteer stint running the World Central Kitchen Tijuana, I earned $150 per day as a stipend.  I have spent 70% of those earnings on my brothers and sisters down here and really need your help to continue the mission.  

We are still looking for a furnished family home here in Playas where I can house our migrant brothers and sisters as well as our Mexican brother, his girlfriend and their one year old baby.  I cannot give out the names of these beautiful souls nor can I post photos of them, as it would be at the sacrifice of their safety and possibly their cases.  That is something I am not willing to do.  

It is our mission to have the home be a revolving door where people in need can come, get support, safety, nourishing food, and love while they await their cases for asylum.  I have chosen Las Playas because the environment is more conducive to relieving anxiety and fear as it is also a safer part of Tijuana. 

My friend from Honduras just started a full-time job this week, and we have new job leads at a new restaurant that is opening here in Playas for the rest of our friends.  

These last three weeks at the beach have been excellent medicine for everyone, and I have seen a major shift in their energies and health overall.  Anxiety levels have decreased, healthy foods and plant medicine increased, and our lives have been filled with much laughter,  music, shamanic and reiki healing, and food medicine.  

I am creating this GoFundMe to support our cause so that our migrante brothers and sisters can continue to send money to their families in their respective countries as well as save money for their new lives.  This money will also go to putting money on phone and commissary accounts for our friends currently being detained in Otay Detention Center San Diego, and San Luiz Detention Center in Arizona as well as other incidentals.  

I am deeply grateful for the opportunity to serve in this way, and I am confident that every act of service creates a grand ripple effect, and therefore becomes part of the paradigm shift.  Any amount donated will be greatly appreciated and welcomed! We need $4,000 raised as soon as possible to cover the deposit, first month's rent of the house, food, and supplies for the baby.

Thank you all for your love.  Please share this as often as possible as we cannot do any of this without the support of all of the angels. 

With so much love,
Shannon Renee Dawson-Neubauer


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Shannon Dawson-Neubauer 
Los Angeles, CA
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