Here are testimonials from participants in Kino Border Initiative Delegations:

“My favorite memory was working at the comedor (CAMDEP).  Just being able to interact with the migrants was such an unbelievable experience that I will never forget.  It is something that I have brought back to St. Louis and shared with my friends.  The stories that we heard are so powerful. They have continued to inspire me to make those stories known.”

“Dialogue, shared experience and storytelling are what I feel have the capacity to cause personal conversion and social change.  The balance between this type of service and direct volunteering…was perfect.  I was humbled and vulnerable, but also empowered.”

“On the trip I spoke with a man who had been deported from California after living in the United States for many years.  He spoke nearly perfect English, and it would have been impossible to know he was undocumented had I met him on the street.  He thanked me about the good work we were doing and, upon hearing my interest in writing, hoped that I could tell these people’s stories one day…These types of stories are exactly the type of human face that the KBI trip allowed me to put on the issue of illegal immigration.”

“Through this immersion trip, I came to better understand the immigration issues along the U.S./Mexico border, and more importantly, the migrants who risk their lives to support their families and loved ones back home. By serving at a comedor and visiting a women’s shelter in Nogales Sonora, I realized that migration into the U.S. was a human issue rather than a political or economic one. As Mr. Flowers told me, “the real fight is the fight for human dignity.”

“Looking around the [comedor], I began to realize that these migrants had hope because they appreciated the small things in life: food, water, shelter, and clothing. Through these migrants and the experiences during the trip, I saw hope, not despair, love, not hatred, faith, not doubt, light, not darkness, and joy, not sadness.”

“Prior to leaving for the trip, I was clueless about the current immigration system and the desperation many migrants experience. I believed that everyone who crossed into the US illegally did it because they wanted money for selfish reasons, or something else along those lines. However, during this trip I learned that many cross because they want to see their family, or they want to earn money in America and send it back to their family. For example, we met an eighteen year old girl named Maria. She tried to cross because her sister has diabetes and cannot afford the medicine she desperately needs. Not only did I learn about the different motives for crossing illegally, but I also met multiple people who were deported and was blessed to witness their determination and perseverance.”

“The exposure to something such as this is an important thing that many people never experience. That is one of the most important reasons for going on this trip is exposure. In order to begin to change something, be it poor living conditions, poverty, starvation, etc… you have to be exposed to it. Once you do that, then you can truly know the impact of the service that you, or anyone else, does.”

– Bellarmine Preparatory School students

To submit your own testimonial of a KBI immersion experience, please fill out the form below:


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