By Andrew Marini ’13
The air is cold and the wind is blowing, a rare difference from the common hot, dry weather in Phoenix.
Border Patrol agents are scattered about, lines of cars are formed anxiously waiting to leave or come to the United States. Students on the KBI immersion trip Nov. 4 carry bags of sugar across the border through this environment for the first step of their immersion experience.
The Kino Border Initiative is a cooperative effort between six religious organizations that each help migrants and communities affected by the consequences of migration. The Kino Border Initiative immersion trip happens about once a month and is either a day trip to Nogales on Friday that leaves at 4:30 a.m. or an overnight trip that leaves after sixth period on Thursday. Both trips get back at 9:30 p.m. Friday.
Once the students on this November trip arrived in Nogales they carried bags of sugar across the border in an attempt to immerse themselves more fully in the experience, according to Sam Wolff ’13.
“The trip really gave a face to the people who you see on the news and always hear about. It gives you a better sense of the problem to see them,” Wolff said.
Students arrived on the Mexican side of the border and went to the KBI dining hall to serve dinner to recently deported people. The students visited with the people and learn stories of their travels over the border.
The group then made their way to the KBI women’s shelter where they viewed a PowerPoint on immigration statistics and learned about the problem at hand, and ways they can help.
“The boys take a walk by the wall on the border, where they get to see a mural made up of people who have gone missing,” said Assistant Principal of the Ministry Mrs. Kim Baldwin. “The group also visit the cemetery where many immigrants sleep every night.”
Participants closed the experience by eating an authentic Mexican meal in downtown Nogales of chicken mole. The December trip was a parent-son trip, the first trip of its kind. See the office of Faith and Justice for more information.