Author Archives: Clare McBrien

International Day of the Girl

Just two years ago, the UN declared 11th October as the International Day of the Girl to raise awareness about all issues concerning gender inequality around the world. Despite the good work being done by activists, NGOs, governments and civil society all over the world there are still some worrying statistics out there:

Only 30% of girls in the world are enrolled in secondary school

By 2015, females will make up 64% of the world’s illiterate (adult) population

54% of 3rd-5th grade girls worry about their appearance and 37% worry about their weight.

It is clear we have a lot of work to do. We are very fortunate at Misión México to have seen first-hand the effects of investing in young girls. Some of our children have grown into inspirational young adults and have now passed into the Youth Transition Program. We believe that you must continue to support young girls (and boys) as they make that difficult transition into adulthood. Two girls in currently in the Youth Transition program are Maria and Dulce.

Maria is a fun loving, creative young lady. Her dream is to run her own dance studio and help children overcome trauma through dance. Her advice to young girls out there is “be proud of who you are, don’t be scared of being a woman. Be the very best you can be and never give up.?

Maria teaching dancing at Mision Mexico

Maria teaching dancing at Mision Mexico

Dulce, believes strongly in the role education plays in young girls’ lives. “All girls should have access to education; they need to show the world that jobs are not only for men!?

Now studying to be a social worker she says: “Mum (Pam Skuse) had such a good life in Australia and she left it behind and changed everything so she could help all of us. She’s been a real inspiration and that’s why I’m studying to be a Social Worker, because Mum inspires me to help others.?

Dulce

Dulce catching a wave

Seeing Maria and Dulce thrive reinforces our belief that we need to continue to support young girls into adulthood and that the Youth Transition Program is vital for this. Our aim is to continue to empower these young people in a bid to break the cycle of poverty and abuse, and further create confident, competent young adults and positive role models who can successfully live independently.

20% of the Misión México household are now adults; 41% are 12-18 years old and by 2019 there will be an additional 15 young people entering adulthood. We therefore need your help so that we can see our young people grow and develop as they reach adulthood. Please contact us if you can sponsor one of our young adults or volunteer with our program; find out more about our Youth Transition program.

Q&A

How will you be spending International Day of the Girl? Let us know what this day means to you.

Where to volunteer? A special report for Small Charity week

Each year, hundreds of thousands of people travel across the globe to volunteer abroad. Although it’s an activity that is usually associated with students or as a stop-gap between jobs, it’s an activity you can easily adapt to your way of life, with placements lasting between 2-3 weeks to months at a time.

With Small Charity Week fast approaching, it’s a good time to focus on smaller organisations that are looking to make a change in the world, one step at a time. Although bigger charities may well give you more scope in terms of work experience, in the form of office-based work for example, one of the greatest pulls of smaller charities is the chance to get to grips with their activities, from the ground up.

First things first, when looking for a small charity to work with, you should check out the organisation, how and where it was set up, who is in charge and what their mission is. Time and time again, students feel underwhelmed by a charity’s daily activities and their placements as they didn’t put enough research into finding the project they would most like to work on.

You should also think about what sort of role you’re after. Just because you’re volunteering doesn’t mean you should only think about what you can give a charity with your help and hard work. The best workers are those that are passionate about the cause and the responsibilities their job entails, so think about the different areas you would like to be involved in.

Whether you’re looking to work as part of a community, project manage a particular event, work with a team of volunteers or take responsibility for a whole strand of operations, it’s up to you. Volunteering gives you the chance to help out, and help yourself, too. After all, you only get out what you put in, so if you know from the start you’re really good at networking and always the last to leave a party, then you could look into fundraising for the charity of your choice. If you’re more hands on and enjoy working with small teams, teaching and group activities would be right up your street.

Small charities need people who are passionate about their cause and their mission in order to contribute to their network and help them grow. Volunteering during your year abroad will give you the chance to stretch your horizons, gain experience in something you believe in, but also help give you a first-hand experience of what it’s like to work in a small team.

Part of the beauty of Misión México is the close work you’ll get to do with the kids, of all ages and all sorts of backgrounds.

“It´s difficult to imagine the suffering that some of the beautiful children in Misión México have gone through in their short lives. These children welcome you in and show you so much love, it’s hard not to get very attached to each and every one!” Emma, Ireland, recent volunteer with us.

Arts and craft time

We’ve also partnered with all sorts of different organisations, in Mexico, the UK, Australia and the US, meaning you can get involved once you’re back home, too.

“My husband and I had the opportunity to go to Tapachula in 2010 to meet Pam and Alan the kids. We just loved them all and were amazed at how Pam and Alan are working with the children. I believe we all can find a few hours to spare a week to a life changing organisation like Misión México, no matter where you are in the world, there is always a way one can help.” Ana Lucia Cortez, Australia

new balance shoes store

Ana and kids

Ana and kids

We like to think of our work as being more than a shelter for the kids, but rather a real sense of family and community.

“I have two parents who show me what it is like to have unconditional love, and I have a big family to show me what it is like to be united as a family; this is Misión México“. Maria, 22 years, one of our family members.

Maria, Pam and Alan at the event

Maria, Pam and Alan at the event

So, what are you waiting for, come join us at Misión México and change lives! 

Jason and kids

Volunteer Jason and kids at Mision Mexico, Tapachula, Mexico

Mother’s day – Mum’s inspiring change

This past month we have been celebrating International Women’s Day at Mision México. We have interviewed three of our incredible young ladies, explored the role of men in inspiring change for women, and now on Mother’s Day we turn our attention to mums.

International mum movements

The role of educated, empowered, equipped mothers in the development of their families, communities and nations is widely documented and underpins the push behind many campaigns aimed at young girls such as The Girl Effect led by Nike Foundation, in collaboration with the NoVo Foundation, United Nations Foundation and Coalition for Adolescent Girls. The idea behind many of these international movements is to “leverage the unique potential of adolescent girls to end poverty for themselves, their families, their communities, their countries and the world.?

The international community is united in their desire to end the suffering of women for whom motherhood has been forced upon them too early or has caused them great suffering due to a lack of access to maternal health care. Furthermore, there is a recognition that young girls who become mothers too early leave school, are unable to work or generate an income, which not only leaves themselves and their children in a hugely vulnerable position, but means they are not contributing to the economic growth of their country. In fact, in India, adolescent pregnancy results in nearly $10billion in lost potential income per year! It is also well documented that children of mothers who have been forced into motherhood too early are likely to repeat the pattern and so the cycle of poverty continues.

Pamela Skuse’s effect at Mision Mexico

 At Mision México we have seen the powerful effect a strong, compassionate, loving mother can have on young girls (and boys). Pamela Skuse has become a source of inspiration, comfort and advice for all her children and her determination that they should be educated, compassionate and driven can be seen in the choices they make and the self believe they exhibit.

She is an example of how when we invest in young girls, they grow up to be well equipped mothers, who break the cycle of poverty for their children. Pam’s children have come from a wide range of backgrounds, some poor, some abusive, some neglectful. She changed their lives, with the help of our sponsors, by giving them an education and instilling in them determination, self believe, and a desire to follow their dreams. We have already seen the effect this has had on Maria, Katherine and Dulce and we can’t wait to see how they, and all the children at the refuge, change the world for themselves, their future families and their communities.

Happy Mother’s Day!

May we wish a Happy Mothers Day to all the mothers out there working hard to give their children the childhood they deserve and may we thank those investing in young girls all over the world so they may reach their full potential and inspire change in their own lives and the lives of others if they choose to become mothers. May you have a restful day surrounded by those who love you most.

Inspiring Change for Women – is it a Man’s Job?

This International Women’s Day we have celebrated many women all over the world such as Katherine, Maria and Dulce, who have inspired change in their own lives and in the lives of others. We have taken stock of the huge amount of work still needed to be done to end violence against women, to give them access to education and health care, to break glass ceilings in the work place and provide them with access to political power so that their voices may be heard.  We have talked, and rightly so, about what women can instigate, what women can create and what women can change. However, there is one slightly uncomfortable, yet important truth, we haven’t spoken much about:

“Inspiring change for women is a man’s issue?

This controversial proposition is dealt with eloquently by Jackson Katz where he speaks about Gender Violence in the United States. He refutes the position that gender violence is a “women’s issue which some good men help out with? arguing that by calling it a “women’s issue? we give men an excuse not to pay attention, which prevents introspective thinking by men about their dominance and thus the power systems women dispute go unchallenged by those maintaining them.

Mision Mexico’s Alan Skuse

Therefore, while it is imperative that we empower women to inspire lasting change in their own lives and in the lives of others, if we ignore men we will get nowhere. Men like Alan Skuse, who is a key instigator of change for the young girls living at Misión México. In fact, his very identity is defined firstly by the relationships he has with women.

“I am a husband, a father, a grandfather, a worker, a director (of the refuge), a surfer and a sportsman.?

He is a firm believer that two approaches to inspiring change need to take place. Firstly, we need to help young girls and women to “believe in themselves; to become confident that they are equal and have a valued place in society” and secondly, we need to “educate young boys and men so that they see women as equal and not there for the convenience of men.?

Alan giving a lesson on condensation

Alan giving a lesson on condensation

This is not an easy task, especially in Tapachula where “it appears that men think that they have more rights simply because they are men.? As a father to a large number of young boys, he struggles against a culture where “men here feel they have a right to have a wife and a family and more often than not a mistress or two and children to them also.? He worries about the “example are they setting for their sons? which undermines the progress women are making in fostering an equal society.

A firm believer that “actions speak louder than words? and acutely aware of his responsibility to be a good role model, he takes his role as a father and grandfather very seriously:

Papa and the girls

Papa and the girls

“I try to show respect to all the women in my life; my wife, my daughters, and all the girls placed in our care. I encourage the girls to challenge themselves and strive for higher levels in their education and sporting activities so that they develop a strong belief in themselves.  I am also constantly telling the boys to show respect to the girls. They have grown up in an underprivileged society where they haven’t had good role models.?

Therefore, while it could be argued that inspiring change for women should be led by women, we shouldn’t ostracize men. Rather we should challenge them to make women’s empowerment their issue and we should celebrate those that have already done so. At Misión México we are very proud to know men all over the world who challenge existing power systems and ideologies that discriminate against women just by being themselves; men whose very nature it is to treat women as equal; men who commit themselves to being good fathers, husbands, neighbours, teachers and friends.

lan and the kids enjoying a family day at the beach

Alan and the kids enjoying a family day at the beach

Maria’s Story – Inspiring change for International Women’s Day

In the run up to International Women’s day 2014, we at Mision México have decided to interview three exceptional young ladies from our family. This year’s theme is ‘Inspiring change’ and these girls certainly do that! So far we have spoken to Katherine and Dulce and last, but certainly not least, it’s Maria!

Maria

Maria at her Christmas Concert 2014

If Maria was a Spice Girl, she would be sporty spice! She is a keen surfer and football player and is currently studying dance. Her dream is to run her own dance studio and help children overcome trauma through dance. Like all the young ladies at Mision México she is talented, intelligent and highly motivated to build on the change she has seen in her life and become a successful young lady!

What strikes you most when you speak to Maria is her sheer determination to “be the best I can be in everything I do.?  Her can-do attitude to life is mirrored on that of her sporting hero Bethany Hamilton, professional surfer, who lost an arm after being attacked by a shark. “She showed women that, even when missing a part of ourselves, we can do amazing things, and that we deserve to be treated equally? she told me.

Maria’s call for change

Maria is adamant that things need to change for women all over the world: “men can treat us as if we are cheaper when we are not. Being a woman in Mexico is tough.? Maria certainly speaks from experience. Her ‘womanhood’ was forced upon her far too early when, aged three, her mother died. Aged 5 she was forced into domestic slavery by her family who sent her to live with a stranger after her grandfather tried to sexually abuse her. You can see her full story below in an MTV documentary “Invisible Slaves? where she tells her own “Cinderella? story of domestic servitude, sleeping on a cardboard sheet, and being beaten with a cord when she hadn’t sold enough in the street. Her story begins at 8.07mins

Thankfully, her life changed “completely?, when aged 8 she found the courage to run away from where she was living and seek the help of a lady she often sold to. Once they believed her story she was referred to the social services and eventually Mision México  where “I had two parents who showed me what it was like to have unconditional love, and I had a big family to show me what it was like to be united.?  This changed her life; she became proud of who she was.

Maria teaching dancing at Mision Mexico

Maria teaching dancing at Mision Mexico

For Maria, change needs to occur in every aspect of women’s lives in every corner of the world – they need greater access to education, to jobs, to political power, but perhaps most importantly, to hope, to safety and to acceptance. When I asked her what advice she had for young girls all over the world she told me “things need to change so that all women everywhere can be proud of who they are, and are not scared of being women. They need to be who they really are, to be the very best they can be and to never give up.?

On International Women’s day, we often celebrate how concrete development initiatives such as education programmes, maternal health initiatives and micro finance projects change the lives of women and their communities as it is easy to evidence. What is more difficult to understand, yet just as important to consider, is how “softer? interventions such as how providing a young girl with community, safety and love can change her life immeasurably.

Pam Skuse and Maria flying high

Pam and Maria flying high

Dulce’s story – Inspiring change for International Women’s day

In the run up to International Women’s day 2014, we at Mision México have decided to interview three exceptional young ladies from our family. This year’s theme is ‘Inspiring change’ and these girls certainly do that! Last week, we interviewed Katherine. Next up, it’s Dulce,

Dulce Surfing

Dulce Surfing

Dulce is another of Mision México’s bright, compassionate young ladies who has overcome a very difficult childhood. Now a keen surfer, a passion she inherited from her father Alan Skuse, she inspires the younger girls in her family to surf without fear and to hold their own with the boys! She loves music and, like Katherine, has chosen to pursue a career that allows her to help others: social work. She is currently in university and describes the purpose of social work as  “letting people know that, as human beings, we all have the same rights – women as much as men.?  When asked why she chose to study social work she told me:

Decision to pursue Social Work

“Mum (Pam Skuse) had such a good life in Australia and she left it behind and changed everything so she could help all of us. She’s been a real inspiration and continues to help even when being incredibly challenged with the children at the refuge. That’s why I’m studying to be a Social Worker, because Mum inspires me to help others.?

Dulce’s story

Dulce ready for class

Dulce ready for class

Dulce’s journey to University, however, has by no means been smooth. When I asked her what the biggest challenge in her life has been, it wasn’t losing her mother to a terminal illness aged 7 or being forced to beg on the streets for money aged 12 that she quotes. It was her grandmother telling her that she didn’t need to study and that a women’s place was at home to look after men that caused the most damage. A firm believer in education from a very young age, Dulce looked to the social services for help who referred her to Mision México. Once there Pam confirmed what Dulce already knew: that she should study.

“Suddenly I didn’t have to work, I didn’t have to worry, all I had to do was study?

However, her studies where further interrupted by her worry for her younger brother who she supported through rehab to help him beat this drug addiction. Unsurprising the emotional strain affected her progress at school.  “I kept asking myself ‘why is this happening to me?’ It is so hard to concentrate in school when you are so sad and I began to doubt myself and think maybe my grandmother was right.?

Mision Mexico inspiring change

However, thanks to her own strength of character, bolstered by Pam and Alan’s continual encouragement, she completed high school and is now flourishing at university. While she recognises that it is hard being a woman, she is proud to be one and admires them for being mentally strong, caring and acutely aware of what is going on around them. This year’s International Women’s Day is important to Dulce: “Change needs to occur, so women are finally equal,? she told me, “all girls should have access to education; they need to show the world that jobs are not only for men!?

Dulce

Dulce Surfing

Dulce represents the self-starters of this world; those of us who know that they possess the intelligence, determination and compassion needed to succeed. Those of us who challenge the status quo and strive for change at all costs. Those of us with self–belief even when circumstance and loved ones tell us we shouldn’t. Not all girls are lucky enough to possess this self-belief, and never have access to the tools to find it – Dulce believes education, family and compassion are what is needed.

Katherine’s story – Inspiring change for International Women’s Day

In the run up to International Women’s day 2014, we at Mision México have decided to interview three exceptional young ladies from our family. This year’s theme is ‘Inspiring change’ and these girls certainly do that! First up, Katherine. Also read Dulce and Maria’s stories

Katherine's story

Katherine

I, Clare McBrien, was lucky enough to interview Katherine in early February. Now 22, she is an intelligent, articulate, passionate young lady studying to be a doctor. She enjoys playing basketball with her dad Alan, (when they play on the same team they always win) and her favourite singer is Shakira. She studies incredibly hard and has the world at her feet!  Thanks to the bravery of her mothers, (she has two) and her own determination, her life has seen a dramatic change.

Originally from El Salvador, the word she used most frequently to describe her experience there was ‘nada’ or nothing. “There was no food, no school, no house, nothing. There everyone is very poor.?  Her childhood was punctuated by experiences of an abusive father, prison-like refuges, sexual harassment and immigrating to Mexico with her mother where continues to fight to get a permanent residency. She moved into Mision México after running away from home and stayed there for 5 years where she thrived.

Now living with her biological family, I asked her what it meant to be a woman in Mexico. She told me it is “a way of life; an opportunity, a blessing and a challenge.? She believes women are “brave, strong, intelligent and loving?; qualities she has seen in both her mothers – Ana, her biological mother, and Pam, her mother at Mision México. “My mothers are my inspiration; they are two completely different women, both with very hard lives.  They have shown me how to overcome difficulties. They cry, and then they get up and keep going.? 

Katherine y Pam 2012

Katherine and Pam in 2012

Katherine on education and faith

Katherine has had to learn this lesson quickly and has done so with remarkable tenacity. When speaking to her it quickly became clear that her life is based upon two core pillars: education and faith.

Katherine and mother Ana

Katherine and mother Ana

Very aware of how lucky she is to live in a country where women are “free?, Katherine studies 6 days a week from 6.30 until 11am and then works is in hospital from 12pm until 10pm. “I am really happy to do it,? she told me “it is great to feel that people trust me.? She learned the value of education from her mother Pam who told her to forget about boys until she had finished school.  In fact, when asked how we can inspire change for the lives of women, it is education she turns to. “Ever since I was a little girl I have seen how intelligent girls are, then I see them fall in love, fall pregnant and leave school. This has to change; they could have a life full of success. Out of all the girls in my high school year, only 5 of us are still in education!? She firmly believes that “education is the most important thing to change the lives of women?.

The second thing that comes across is her faith; faith in God and faith in herself. “Believing is everything?, she told me when I asked her what advice she had for women and girls on International Women’s Day. “You have to have dreams, you have to follow your dreams, and you have to have faith in yourself. Life isn’t easy, there will always be difficult times, but if you believe you can do it then you will.?

Katherine is a young woman that encompasses this year’s International Women’s Day theme. She has overcome great difficulty and experienced profound change in her life thanks to two very special mentors, her own self belief, and education. Three things that we need to insure all young girls have access to if they are to change the world.

Katherine and friend Adrian

Katherine and friend Adrian at medical school

Happy Australia Day from Mision Mexico!

Australia Day MarliWhile the UK battles the post Christmas gloom of dark nights, horizontal rain and empty wallets, in Australia they celebrated Australia day this weekend. Not without its controversies, it is a day which marks the day in 1788 when Captain Arthur Philip landed in Port Jackson along with 736 convicts. While some people call it the celebration of the birth of a modern nation, others such as this year’s Australian of the Year, Adam Goodes, describe it as a “very sad day for a lot of our mob“.

 Indeed, Australia’s history, brought to the forefront of everyone’s mind on the 26th January, at best sits uncomfortably with those who call themselves Australian and at worst causes a great deal of sorrow to those aboriginal communities who were the original Australians and yet remain victims of racism and inequality. This nation’s delicate task of ‘remembering’ her history, therefore, is not to be underestimated.

Australia Day ballThe act of ‘remembering’ and ‘celebrating’ a nation’s history is often a complex one, especially when the dominant narrative is disputed and the overarching focus forgets one sector in society.  Bringing people together to remember, therefore, is no easy task. However, as we all know ‘nothing worth doing is easy’.

For people like Goodes, Australia day provides Australians with an opportunity to come together “as a nation to break down the silos between races, break down those stererotypes of minority populations… to be proud of our heritage regardless of the colour of our skin and be proud to be Australian.”

At Mision México we are extremely proud of our Australian heritage. Indeed we wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for two very important Australians Pam and Alan Skuse who left their home on the Sunshine Coast to run a refuge in Tapachula, Mexico. Our history is made up of their story and the story of every child that comes to live with them. Our family history, therefore, isn’t one single narrative, but a complex network of stories which are often difficult to relive.

Therefore, on Australia Day we celebrated our history on the beach! Thank you all those Aussies out there who support us. We are extremely proud of our heritage – no matter how complicated it may be!

Australia day play

Las Posadas – a thank you to the innkeepers of this world

Mision Mexico at christmas treeAll over the world we celebrate Christmas through rituals. As nations we celebrate Christmas through parades such as ‘Las Posadas’, the nine day celebration currently taking place in Mexico, carol services or nativity plays. What most of us cherish, however, are family rituals such as what time we wake up, what we eat, when we open our presents and whether we watch the queen’s speech of play charades. We take comfort in the repetition of words, songs, acts we learned from our parents and will pass down to our children. It creates a sense of continuity, of comfort and of safety. 

The effect of traditions and rituals

But why do traditions and rituals have such a powerful effect on us? Why do we travel miles to be with family? Why do we repeat the same thing each year instead of exploring new ways to celebrate the holiday? Because taking part in rituals allows us to reaffirm who we are and where our place is in our community, our nation and indeed in the world. We use them to understand our socio-political reality and then to project that reality onto a higher, mythological plane. This doesn’t necessarily mean a religious one. Whether we are religious or not, we often consider the greater questions of human existence at Christmas: love, hope, community, family and faith. It is basic human instinct to explore these eternal questions, and at Christmas we often do this through tradition. 

Mexican dance performance Christmas 2012

Las Posadas – the innkeeper

In Mexico, Las Posadas explore these deeper questions through a nameless biblical hero: the innkeeper. Indeed, posada means ‘shelter’ or ‘inn’. By recreating the story of when Mary and Joseph searched Bethlehem for shelter, and acting out the moment when the innkeeper allowed them to sleep in his stable when everyone else turned them away, they become part of the story, and therefore explore the notion of opening up your home to strangers, and showing love, kindness and charity even when it is inconvenient for you personally; it reminds them of what it means to be human.

All over the world are modern day innkeepers. Homeless charities, orphanages, foster parents, rehab centres, policemen, churches and individuals who open their doors to people everyone else has turned away. As we celebrate the Posadas this week at Misión México, we want to thank the innkeepers of this world for reminding us what it means to be human. We are immensely proud of Pam and Alan who open their home to children in Tapachula Mexico who have nowhere safe to go.

There are thousands of innkeepers all over the world; we would love to hear your story this Christmas.

Christmas fun at MM

Christmas shopping – love or loathe it?

Christmas 2As the infectious Christmas adverts herald the beginning of the festive season and we begin the count down to turkey dinners, mince pies and Christmas jumpers, the menacing face of Christmas shopping begins to haunt our dreams. Whether you love or loathe it, we all spend hours traipsing around shops looking for that perfect gift for our loved ones. Something that will reflect our love for them and bring them a little slice of joy. All too quickly, however, the opportunity Christmas presents us with to be generous to one another turns into an inconvenient tradition plagued by consumerism. We have that all too familiar moment when we ask ourselves “What do I buy someone who has everything?” For charitable organisations big and small all over the world, the question is often “What do you give to someone who has nothing?”

Indeed Christmas  is a vital time for charities to tap into the holiday’s giving spirit and raise vital funds to care for the most vulnerable in our societies. Hard hitting (often controversial) adverts burst the consumer Christmas bubble so carefully constructed by large corporations and force us to face uncomfortable truths about the world at a time when we want to face inwards to the comfort of our family and friends.

The best gift for Mision Mexico children: Education

At Misión México, Pam and Alan are confronted by the question: “What can we give our 50+ children who started out having almost nothing?” Rather than toys, chocolate and computer games (which would also be gratefully received this Christmas), they decided to put long term investment into their children’s education at the top of their list to Santa last year.

L. R Hector, Griselda, Victor, Lupita, Candy, Tere, Angelica, Yessica, Sammy and Marli

11 students from Miguel Hidalgo College. L to R. Hector, Griselda, Victor, Lupita, Candy, Tere, Angelica, Yessica, Sammy and Marli

Thanks to nine very generous sponsors last Christmas, nine of our children´s school fees and associated costs were covered. This included Katherine’s first year at medical school and Marli’s first year at kindergarten. Enrolling these children in education is the only way we can work towards breaking the poverty cycle and setting these children on the road to reaching their full potential. The immense power of education is well known and we hope one day that all our children will have full time sponsors so they may carry on their education and realise their dreams of becoming doctors, teachers, dancers, surfers.

Thanks you for those who gave a gift this year to Mision Mexico

So as you don your armour and head into labyrinth of your local shopping centre this week let us praise you for giving gifts this year. Let us also thank all of you who you who have generously donated to Misión México this year and indeed those who have responded to our Christmas Appeal already. Thank you to those who have spread the word, gone to our fundraiser events, sent cards, volunteered your time in the UK and/or Mexico visited our website and generally supported Pam and Alan raise a large family. All your gifts have been very gratefully received.

Image

Thanks to her sponsor Katherine started her degree in Medicine having excelled at school. She is one step closer to realising her dream of becoming a doctor.

Marli School

Thanks to her sponsor Marli felt very proud putting on her school uniform for her first day of school.