Immigrating between Central America and the United States is a perilous, sometimes deadly, journey. For Central Americans, crossing through Mexico – which deports them at much higher rates than immigrants from other countries – can mean gang violence, sexual abuse, and more. But as they flee violence and poverty, many have no choice but to risk their lives.
For about 10 days, a huge caravan of at least 1,200 Central Americans has inched closer to Mexico City (where many will seek asylum) and the United States. Organized by Pueblos Sin Fronteras, the caravan is supposed to shield the large group from the usual perils that lie in wait. In the last few days – with President Donald Trump pressuring Mexico to thwart their efforts – the caravan has become a topic of conversation. On Tuesday, many outlets reported that their journey had stalled before Pueblos Sin Fronteras provided information about the group’s plans to move north. So as misinformation spreads about their motives (especially via Trump, who also said they were coming to the US to benefit from DACA, a program they’re not eligible for) and experiences, one Rio Grande Valley website is giving Central Americans the space to tell their own stories.
Neta – a multimedia company based in Texas – has teamed up with Pueblos Sin Fronteras to amplify the voices of those in the caravan. “Neta has been helping Pueblo Sin Fronteras create videos since one of their caravans in 2017,” the platform tells Remezcla. “Since then, we’ve helped PSF by creating videos with audio from detained migrants, shared a story of a detained pregnant woman needing medical attention, and, now, curating and editing the footage filmed by immigrants in the current caravan traversing Mexico. Highlighting these videos filmed by the immigrants themselves as they are making their way to the US is a way for us to honor the dignity of immigrants by helping them be the agents of documenting their own story on their own terms. All we did was send the equipment. They are doing the rest.”
On Tuesday, Neta released the first video and it plans to publish as many as three videos a week, depending on whether the immigrants have access to the internet.
Watch the first video below and check back in on Neta’s site for new updates.