Show your love and give the gift of light and safety. Rio Valley Relief Project is raising funds to purchase 250 solar-powered lanterns by January 12, 2020 to help protect asylum-seeking families in Matamoros, Mexico from crimes in the night. Any donations are welcome through PayPal at info@riovalleyreliefproject.com.

As shared in a recent post entitled The Human Spirit, asylum seekers are “tremendously vulnerable to assault, kidnapping and rape. The camp is dark at night and there is no protective fence. People who mean to harm these families and individuals can stroll in and out of the camp at their leisure and there is little being done to prevent children from disappearing or from gang members terrorizing asylum seekers as they wait for doors to open again.”

Dianne Solis of The Dallas Morning News reported that “Volunteers from around the U.S. — from Dallas and Houston to Florida and Maine — regularly cycle through the border’s camps with food, tents, blankets, jeans, sweat shirts, diapers, toys — and even songs for the children. While the efforts are extraordinary and a patchy organization is slowly emerging, it clearly isn’t enough.

Vaquiz is grateful for the kindness. But what he could really use to protect his family is a battery-powered lamp. That way no one could sneak up on their tent.

Many people here whisper about the dangers. Migrants are taken by the local cartel members and their lookouts, who openly walk into the camp, at any hour, said a Honduran who didn’t want to be identified because he feared for his safety. A Honduran woman who has been at the camp for several months said a man posing as an asylum-seeker within the camp has molested two small girls. “We can’t complain. It’s a mafia and they will come and beat us,” she said.

No one runs the camps. There are no controls for who enters the encampment. Some migrants have clustered their tents on the sidewalks leading to the nearby Gateway International Bridge to be ready if their asylum cases are called, but they’re also hoping for more safety. Passing cars provide a bit of light. But the vast majority of people, hundreds more, have secured space on the tree-lined grounds near the river where the camp has grown. They are the most vulnerable.”

Rio Valley Relief Project organizers are looking to raise over $6,000.00 in one week to purchase solar-powered lanterns used by the United Nations, NGOs and non-profits all around the world. Donations are accepted through PayPal at info@riovalleyreliefproject.com.

Click to donate and show your love with light.

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