Last Updated: 03/23/2021 

As of March 3, Mexico has confirmed 2.3 million cases of COVID-19 and 188,866 related deaths since the start of the pandemic. On that date, the country had more than 286,000 active cases of the virus. With the low rate of testing, the true numbers could be much higher. Mexico launched a vaccination campaign in February but has had problems accessing enough doses. Indigenous communities that distrust the government have refused vaccination. Health authorities have called for citizens to stay home as much as possible, follow social distancing guidelines, employ frequent hand hygiene and wear masks in public. Schools are closed in nearly all Mexican states. Curfew restrictions vary based on the region. 

In-person group activities are on hold at nearly all Compassion child development centers, but staff are making home visits, calling families, and responding to emergencies. All frontline church partners have received flyers on disease prevention and treatment that they can print and distribute in their communities. Staff members have been able to distribute over 333,000 food packs and 169,500 hygiene kits and have provided medical support to more than 26,000 individuals. 

How is Compassion Currently Operating in Mexico?

Below, you will find the latest information on how Compassion is currently operating in Mexico, including status updates on center openings, letter delivery and gift delivery. This is the most current information we have, though it can change quickly. Please know that all children and their families are being checked in on regularly by staff, either in person or by phone, even if the Compassion center is not open for programming.

Are Compassion Centers Open?

Nearly all centres in Mexico are temporarily closed, though some are able to hold small group activities. Staff members continue to call and visit at home. Because of the generous support of sponsors and donors, they have been able to distribute over 333,000 food packs and 169,500 hygiene kits to children and their families! 

Are Children Receiving Letters?

At this point, we are not able to safely deliver letters to children registered at Compassion centers in Mexico. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t write! We encourage you to continue sending your sponsored child letters of encouragement and hope. What a joyful day it will be when those letters are delivered!

Are Gifts Being Delivered?

Gifts continue to be distributed in Mexico, although they are currently delayed. In some communities, staff members have needed to disburse monetary gifts to an appropriate, verified caregiver. This applies to family gifts and child gifts (including birthday and final gifts). Families may spend the gift on whatever they consider most important to meet family needs. The caregiver will be notified whether a gift has been designated as a child gift or family gift. The caregiver will decide the best use of the money, recognizing that sometimes purchasing food or paying rent is in the best interest of a child.

Story From the Field

In Oaxaca, one of the Mexican states hardest hit by COVID-19, there is a community that hasn't recorded any COVID-19 cases. There, from day one, the Una Familia para Usted (A Family for You) Child Development Center has worked fast and hard to educate families about good hygiene.

Oaxaca has a high rate of illiteracy, so although the press shares information about the virus and how to prevent it, families need an interactive and easy-to-understand way to learn.

With this challenge in mind, the Compassion church partner came up with a creative idea to encourage children to adopt good hygiene habits. “The Tale of Coronavirus” is an educational story that the center's tutors read to children over the phone.

“We made a tale to capture the attention of the children, but especially because Oaxaca is an oral community due to its high percentage of illiteracy. Therefore, oral communications work much better,” says Soreli, one of the tutors.

Eleven-year-old Daniela and her siblings love the story and changed their hygiene habits after hearing it. “I learned so much with ‘The Tale of Coronavirus.’ I don't understand what the news says, and we didn’t know how to prevent the virus, but thanks to the center, now we understand it, and we have better hygiene to stay healthy. And I love how interesting and funny the tale is,” she says.

How can I pray for Mexico?

Pray that God will heal people who have tested positive for COVID-19 and that they will make a full recovery.

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