Each month this spring Border Partners organized and executed food distribution drives. These significant efforts began at the onset of the pandemic in 2020. Since then, we’ve regularly helped those who are most in need in our Palomas community area with a nutritional supplement. Most recently, eighty food baskets blessed 246 people, including the most needy families and seniors. Determining who needs these important nutrition resources is done carefully.
Thirty family recipients receive a dispensa, or food distribution, from us every single month. We selected these families after conducting an annual survey that included direct home visits. These families are, in our judgment, the most needy, the most vulnerable, and the ones with the fewest resources and supports in Palomas.
People in Need of Food
But each month we also give assistance to additional families who others recommend to us as needing extra help. In May, for instance, we gave boxes to fifty additional families. These referrals come to us in a variety of ways. Sometimes, teachers will suggest a family that they know is struggling. Staff members hear of other families who need the help. Or, the community health clinic may suggest names.
More than half of the supplemental food basket recipients are headed by single adults or are individual elders. These are typically either single mothers or seniors who live alone.
How We Help
Each basket recipient receives roughly twenty pounds of very basic food. Recent baskets contained:
- two kilos of dry beans,
- one kilo of rice,
- one kilo of dry mix to make corn tortillas,
- one kilo of potatoes,
- one small tomato puree,
- two soups,
- toilet paper,
- whole wheat bread,
- one kilo of tomato,
- one kilo of flour,
- coffee and coffee cream
Since one Kilogram equals more than two pounds, this supply will really make a difference in the family’s life. Each food supplement weighs in at over 20 pounds.
The logistics of distribution are also significant in a municipality with no public transportation when those in need don’t have personal vehicles. It requires significant effort to transport, sort and deliver the food.
Why It’s So Important
The Mexican government does not provide any food aid to anyone. In Palomas, no other group provides food support to any households on a regular or ongoing basis. Our ability to bring food to people in great need comes from the support we receive from our generous donors. That’s what makes this nutrition supplement program possible.