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Biri Reyes Trujillo (right), social worker for the Buckner Family Hope Center, visits the home of Rosita Miguel Lopez to check on her and her six children, who came to the Hope Center to work on discipline needs.


While families build here to start a new life, frontier areas have always held their own set of issues. It’s a hard life and, as any student of frontier history knows, living on the edge is hard on men, but often hardest on women and children.


“Most of the families share characteristics like a lack of education,” Reyes explains. “Some have different characteristics of violence -- almost all do. Some families are not even aware of the importance of education and positive discipline in their homes. In some of the families, or most of them, they lack basic things such as personal and household hygiene.” To counter these issues the Hope Center assesses families through a social-economical examination, where it looks at things like daily incomes, expenses, characteristics of the home, materials of which it is built, whether it is theirs, rented or borrowed. They use that examination to work with the family and provide the level of support they need. Buckner staff members also physically observe the children, Reyes says, “because sometimes defi ciencies in health are displayed in their facial complexion, signs of malnutrition or physical underdevelopment. These characteristics are also included in the social-economical examination so


56 Buckner Today • FALL 2015 ISSUE


it gets included in their record, and they get the help they need. There are many families that wish they could join the program; however, we try to deliver these services to those who need it most.” Carlos Rodriguez, who coordinates all of Buckner Mexico’s work in the Oaxaca region, says the key to success is matching a family’s needs and initiative with the right solutions. “For example, Vicki Ruiz Garcia’s children are part of the feeding program, the after-school program and some other activities we do; actually they are part of the VBS class too,” Rodriguez says. “A lot of families really need it, but a few of them, just like Vicky’s family, want to really develop themselves.” To underscore his comment, he points to the home of Rosita Miguel Lopez. Miguel cares for six children, one of who is severely handi- capped. Rodriguez says the Miguel children, more than anything, needed help with their behavior. “She’s a very hard worker,” he says. “She works cooking food to sell it on the street, as well as fruit. She used to do somebody else’s cleaning, and actually, all that work with a baby on her back.” Miguel fi rst came to the Hope Center through the children’s feeding


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