Latest update

Mexico has had a surge in new COVID-19 infections and related mortality, with 107,000 deaths—the fourth highest death rate in the world—on 8 December. At least seven of Mexico City’s 54 public hospitals are at full occupancy for beds with respirators, according to the United Nations. Mexican health authorities have called for citizens to stay home as much as possible, follow social distancing guidelines, employ frequent hand hygiene and wear masks in public. Schools remained closed in nearly all Mexican states. Curfew restrictions vary based on region.

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COVID-19 in Mexico

How is Compassion currently operating in Mexico?

  • Are Compassion centres open?

    _Nearly all Compassion child development centres in Mexico are closed. _

    In-person group activities are on hold at nearly all Compassion child development centres, but staff are making home visits and calling families.

    Some tutors have been able to record lessons that they are sending to children so they can learn from home. All local church partners have received flyers on disease prevention and treatment that they can print and distribute in their communities.

    Most centres are distributing food to the families of vulnerable children and responding to any emergencies. Staff members have been able to distribute nearly 252,000 food packs and 134,800 hygiene kits and have provided medical support to more than 13,300 individuals.

  • Are children receiving letters?

    At this point, we are not able to safely deliver letters to children in Mexico. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t write! We encourage you to continue sending your sponsored child letters of encouragement and hope. What a joyful day it will be when those letters are delivered!

  • Are gifts being delivered?

    Gifts continue to be distributed in Mexico, although they are currently delayed. Staff members have been given the option to disburse monetary gifts to an appropriate, verified caregiver, if necessary. This applies to family gifts and child gifts (including birthday and final gifts). Families may spend the gift on whatever they consider most important to meet family needs. The caregiver will decide the best use of the money, recognising that sometimes purchasing food or paying rent is in the best interest of a child.

How you can pray

Thank you for praying for children and families in Mexico who have been impacted by COVID-19—and the local staff and churches who continue to serve them in difficult circumstances.

Please join us in praying for the following:

  • God would guide the doctors' hands as they preform Maria's high-risk heart surgery.
  • God would allow Wendy to return to her family soon. Pray for her safety while she is away.
  • God’s comfort and love would surround Ana and her family as they grieve the passing of her brother.
  • God would continue to heal the people who have tested positive for COVID-19 that they would make a full recovery.
  • Healing and comfort for Zadani’s mother, who has kidney stones.
Timely Health Checks in Mexico

Timely Health Checks in Mexico

Local Compassion staff in Mexico knew children living in poverty would be among the most vulnerable during COVID-19, especially if they had a medical emergency.   Read more open_in_new

Crisis Reports from Mexico

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    Hurricane Eta in Mexico (Crisis Update) 17 Dec, 2020

    The situation

    As a result of Hurricane Eta, the area of Palenque, Chiapas has experienced heavy, constant rains and flooding.

    Global Compassion impact

    Number of local church partners affected: 2 Number of Compassion assisted children affected: 417

    New information

    Local church partners and national staff have supported the affected families with food, water, blankets and clothing utilising Disaster Relief funding. A proposal for Disaster Relief is being developed to help families with temporary shelters, home repairs and replacing household items.

    Prayer

    Please continue to pray for the provision and peace of children, families, and church partners as they are recovering from this additional burden in their communities.

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    Hurricane Iota in Mexico (Crisis Update) 12 Dec, 2020

    The situation

    The community is still without electricity, so communication is scarce. Due to the damage from flooding, it was only this past week people were able to reach the community.

    Global Compassion impact

    Number of local church partners affected: 1 Number of Compassion assisted children affected: 39

    New information

    The local church partner staff is supporting the affected families using Disaster Relief funding.

    Prayer

    Please pray for the safety and provision of the children and families.

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    Hurricane Iota in Mexico 24 Nov, 2020

    The situation

    The community of Frontera Corozal, Chiapas, Mexico is experiencing flooding from the passage of Hurricanes Eta and Iota. The water level continues to rise. Homes are underwater and high voltage cables are covered. The community is without electricity as the power lines were cut off to prevent problems.

    Global Compassion impact

    Number of local church partners affected: 1 Number of Compassion assisted children affected: not yet confirmed

    New information

    Local church partner ME0963 is assessing damages to children and it is estimated that 30 families' homes are flooded. Many families are staying with relatives in higher elevations and some are in the temporary shelter in the community.

    Prayer

    Please pray for the safety and provision of the children, families, and church partners in this area.

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Please note: Due to the current pandemic, most child development centres in Mexico are temporarily closed. Local church partners continue to meet the urgent needs of the children through home-based care.

A snapshot of Compassion's Child Sponsorship Program in Mexico

Compassion’s program is contextualised across countries and communities, as well as age groups.

  • Children aged 1 to 3 receive home-based care.
  • Children aged 3 to 5 visit the Compassion centre for eight hours a week.
  • Children aged 6 and older attend the centre for six hours a week.
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Compassion Program Activities in Mexico

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Compassion assisted children in Mexico typically attend program activities at their local child development centre before or after school and on Saturdays. Here is an example of what a typical program day looks like for children in Mexico.

Devotional time - Children learn to pray.

Spiritual lessons - Children sing songs and learn Bible stories.

Break time - Children can play in a safe environment and develop friendships.

Social-emotional lessons - Children learn conflict resolution skills and how to develop healthy self-esteem. Children often come from challenging home environments and are taught social and personal skills.

Lunch and social time - When children come to the centre for more than four hours, they generally receive a meal. When they attend for less than four hours, they are usually given a snack. The meals typically consist of meat, chicken or soy cooked with vegetables, fruit and fresh water. If they are served a morning meal, it will generally be ham, eggs and fried beans. A snack is usually fruit or a nutritious dessert.

Health lessons - Children learn practical health and hygiene tips.

Letter writing and career planning - Older children work with local staff to identify their strengths and interests and set goals for their future.

Children also learn leadership development skills and are invited to join in vocational training classes, such as carpentry, painting, cooking, computer classes, English, hammock making, silk screening, embroidery, hair styling and fish farming, according to their interests and circumstances.

Parents and caregivers are offered health education and parenting classes.

The greatest needs impacting children living in poverty in Mexico

33

mothers die from pregnancy related causes per 100,000 births

12%

of people lack access to proper sanitation

Deep economic disparity and social exclusion remain in Mexico. Millions of Mexicans live in poverty, and drug-related violence claims thousands of lives every year.

Mexico is the most populous Spanish-speaking country in the world. It has a young population and historically, many people, driven by poverty, have migrated to the neighbouring United States to find employment.

In recent years, the Mexico-US border has become a focal point of international tension, with US President Trump declaring he would build a wall to keep migrants out. In late 2018, a caravan of thousands of migrants from Central American nations travelled through Mexico en route to the US and fetched up at the border, where they were denied entry and driven back with teargas. Many said they were fleeing gang violence and grinding poverty—two issues that also affect many Mexican communities. More than 50 million Mexicans live in poverty, with 11.5 million in extreme poverty (on less than US$1.90 per day). Rural areas are often neglected and huge shanty towns surround the cities.

After former President Calderon declared war on Mexico’s powerful drug-trafficking organisations, in 2006, violence spiralled out of control, resulting in more than 200,000 deaths and one of the highest rates of kidnappings in the world. In July 2018, Andrew Manuel Lopez Obrador was elected President; his campaign focused on ending political corruption and drug-related murders. His success or otherwise will be measured in human lives.

Mexico is a large and diverse country, and there are many areas which do not experience high levels of crime. Yet stabilising the nation to find a long-lasting and widespread peace has proved elusive and now, with the added complications of the COVID-19 pandemic, it seems a distant prospect.

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