Immigrants at McAllen shelter trending up - Brownsville Herald: News

default avatar
Welcome to the site! Login or Signup below.
|
||
Logout|My Dashboard

Immigrants at McAllen shelter trending up

Print
Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Monday, March 23, 2015 8:00 am

McALLEN — Though nothing like last summer, the daily number of immigrants through downtown’s Sacred Heart Catholic Church has been trending slowly but steadily up since the beginning of 2015.

Seemingly out of nowhere, tens of thousands of children and families from Central America crossed the border in 2014, and many pit-stopped in McAllen.

Absent a relief effort after U.S. Border Patrol agents cut the immigrants loose in downtown McAllen, Catholic Charities of the Rio GrandeValley stepped in, setting up a makeshift shelter at the church, welcoming new arrivals with clean clothes, showers and meals. The effort continues today.

And this year is projected to have the second-most number of Central Americans migrate to the United States, and many are expected to cross through the Valley again, according to a study from the Washington Office on Latin America.

“People have been telling us they expect the numbers to increase as the weather gets warmer,” said Eli Fernandez, a director at Sacred Heart, who started in August. “Nothing like last year, but definitely they’re expecting them to go up.”

Between June 14, when Catholic Charities started keeping track, and March 6, a total of 14,074 people have visited, and 1,828 have stayed overnight.

Fernandez said Catholic Charities has put the word out for more donations and for more volunteers.

“We’ve managed to adjust to what the numbers are,” he said. “It’s just a matter of setting your sights and getting going. We’ll meet the demand.”

Unlike the outpost in Brownsville, Sacred Heart has kept its doors open since it began responding to the influx — more than 270 consecutive days.

“It’s sort of fallen off the radar a little bit,” said Kevin Pagan, the city’s attorney and emergency coordinator, “but it still is a need.”

schadde@themonitor.com

Follow us on Facebook

Pet Central

pets

Having a pet is a lot of responsibility, and we’ll help by giving you lots of tips and tricks! More >>

Fitness

Fitness

Our fitness articles will help teach you how to work out with gym- and home-based exercises. More >>

Crosswords

Crosswords

Enjoy the crosswords challenge in our free daily puzzles, from the harder Sunday crossword to the quicker daily. More >>

Sudoku

Sudoku

Every Sudoku has a unique solution that can be reached logically. Enter numbers into the blank spaces so that each row, column and 3x3 box contains the numbers 1 to 9. More >>




Online Features

Pet Central

pets

Having a pet is a lot of responsibility, and we’ll help by giving you lots of tips and tricks! More >>

Fitness

Fitness

Our fitness articles will help teach you how to work out with gym- and home-based exercises. More >>

Crosswords

Crosswords

Enjoy the crosswords challenge in our free daily puzzles, from the harder Sunday crossword to the quicker daily. More >>

Sudoku

Sudoku

Every Sudoku has a unique solution that can be reached logically. Enter numbers into the blank spaces so that each row, column and 3x3 box contains the numbers 1 to 9. More >>