Why the Church donated wooden houses and water systems in Mexico

Two water purification systems and 30 wooden houses will help migrant shelters at the northern Mexico border

The growing number of people arriving at Mexico’s northern border represents a challenge for charitable organizations, government officials and others trying to meet their essential needs. 

Many migrants staying in the border city of Reynosa, in the state of Tamaulipas, have been sleeping on the ground or in tents. But a new donation of 30 wooden houses has given people somewhere more secure and comfortable to stay.

In addition to the new structures, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints — working with Reynosa DIF and the Catholic Church — also donated two water purification systems to the Senda de Vida I and Senda de Vida II shelters, reported the Church’s Mexico Newsroom.

President Francisco J. Martinez, president of the Reynosa Mexico Stake; Pastor Héctor Silva De Luna, director of the Senda de Vida shelters; and the mayor of Reynosa, Carlos Peña, visit with some of the children who temporarily live in the shelters in Reynosa, Mexico, Feb. 22, 2023. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Reynosa Mexico Stake President Francisco J. Martinez attended the event officially marking the delivery of the donations on Feb. 22.

“We are a religious organization that provides assistance without regard to race, religion or nationality, and the help we give is based on the basic principles of personal responsibility, community support, self-sufficiency and sustainability,” President Martinez said.

The shelters’ director, city officials and others also attended, along with the mayor of Reynosa, Carlos Peña.

“This type of donation is very important. I want to wholeheartedly thank the Church of Jesus Christ for carrying out this much-needed project for migrant families who come to this city,” he said.

Reynosa Mexico Stake President Francisco J. Martinez is interviewed by local media about the donation of 30 wooden houses, in the background, to Senda de Vida in Reynosa, Mexico, Feb. 22, 2023. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Other recent donations in Mexico

The Church has supported organizations at Mexico’s northern border in many ways.

For example, in January 2023, the Church gave a new industrial stove, blenders and other equipment to the Desayunador Salesiano Padre Chava in Tijuana.

Then the Church gave beans, rice, sugar, soup and other supplies — to Casa de los Pobres, or House of the Poor in the same city.

New wooden houses at Senda de Vida in Reynosa, Mexico, are shown on Feb. 22, 2023. Wording to mark the Church’s donation is printed on each structure. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Another donation of kitchen equipment took place in Sonora to La Divina Providencia Migrant House Association. The organization feeds almost 2,000 people every day. 

In October 2022, the Church donated a kitchen equipped with industrial appliances to Senda de Vida II. The shelter which had been preparing food outdoors on improvised stoves for thousands of migrants and refugees.

In the same month, the Church gave a donation of food, cleaning kits and personal hygiene supplies to Save the Children — an international humanitarian aid organization supporting several humanitarian shelters in cities along the Mexico border.

And in August 2022, the Church sent food, water and other supplies to people affected by heavy rains and flash flooding in the northern Mexican state of Sonora.

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