Feliz cumpleaños to the Casa’s free, daily Spanish classes for migrants and refugees! Last month we celebrated this big moment – and the accomplishments of so many successful students – with a party. Together with Sin Fronteras staff, Casa guests, volunteers, community members, and alums we ate, danced, celebrated and, of course, broke the piñata.
Mexico is home to thousands of refugees and migrants who have fled their countries of origin because of violence, persecution, and poverty – often leaving everything behind. They come seeking protection, better economic opportunities and greater freedoms. Mexico has opened its doors to this vulnerable population, yet offers few resources. The challenges are great, such as discrimination, prejudice and violence toward migrants. A newly arrived migrant has to face these daily hurdles while finding a way to cover her basic needs (food, shelter, and clothing), find employment and heal from past trauma and suffering. Learning Spanish as quickly as possible and finding a support network are two critical pieces on the road to success. Thanks to Casa de los Amigos and our partner organization, Sin Fronteras, many migrants and refugees find these elements in the daily classes.
There is no other service – and no other community – like ours in Mexico. Since the beginning, we’ve hosted about 600 students from dozens of countries.
The Casa’s Spanish classes continue to offer not only the opportunity to learn critical language skills in a multicultural and friendly atmosphere, they become the heart of their community of friends and support. We see the students gain confidence, make friends, and find jobs or apartments through their peers. This support network accompanied by personal growth is the key to a successful local integration. They feel like they have a home in Casa de los Amigos, a safe, welcoming and multicultural sanctuary in Mexico City.