September 22 – An event organized by the local Mexican community to remember those who passed away in Mexico and Puerto Rico took place this evening in Raleigh, North Carolina. Emotional members of the Mexican community were present holding candles, flags and banners. I was honored to speak in this event with my brothers and sisters. A community that I have close bond. It was an emotional evening. Media was also there to cover this wonderful gathering of solidarity and unity.

A few days ago Mexico was hit hard with an earthquake and Puerto Rico was slammed with hurricane which caused countless deaths and damage to the infrastructure. So far 13 deaths in Puerto Rico have been reported from the hurricane Maria. It may be months before all electricity can be fully restored. If that was not enough, today 70,000 people were told to evacuate who are living near the Guajataca River in northwest Puerto Rico because of “imminent dam break.”

The death toll has risen to 274 from the earthquake in Mexico. Some parts of Mexico City sustained structural damage but no one is shedding light on the indigenous communities of Oaxaca State of Mexico where there is significant damage in small villages and towns. Sadly the government is paying little attention to these communities. The people of Oaxaca speak native Indian Zapateco. The towns and villages that have been affected are Chicapa de Castro, Union Hidalgo, Ixalterpec, Xandy. All these towns are part of the Oaxaca state of Mexico. Communities have not received adequate support from the government and are heavily relying on private donations.

With remembering the deceased, the event was also about the awareness and raising funds that will be sent to Oaxaca towns where people are in dire need of help. A gofundme link will be posted soon so people can easily easily make donations. In the coming weeks Carolina Peace Center will facilitate and organize partnering with the local community to reach out the Mexican government to request that they stretch and increase their humanitarian assistance to Oaxaca state.

Immigrants from Mexico have not only dealt with the recent tragedy of earthquake but are facing discrimination from Trump’s xenophobic policies of increased deportations and terminating DACA program. We the people of North Carolina and country must come together to not only rally and march for them but also reach out to them in any way possible including donations. People of Mexico have played an integral role in building America and its about time that America gives back to them that will have a tangible and meaningful impact.

Prayers were said for the families who lost their loved ones. My Mexican and Puerto Rico community is my family. Mi familia. Nuestro corazón esta con Mexico y Puerto Rico.

Call to Action: United for Mexico and Puerto Rico