Behind Los XV de Rubí Is the Story of a Town Falling Deeper Into Poverty Over 15 Years

Lead Photo: Photo by Jupiterimages / Stockbyte
Photo by Jupiterimages / Stockbyte
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Los XV de Rubí – the upcoming coming-of-age party for Rubí Ibarra García – captivated the internet. It all started with one video where Rubí’s dad invited everyone to the teenager’s quinceañera. And though it instantly became one of the internet’s fascinations – with more than 1 million RSVPing to the quinces – the real reason Rubí’s dad asked everyone to come by is because Villa de Guadalupe is small. According to Animal Politico, about 150 people call the town home. In Rubí’s lifetime, the town has seen a social decline – going from moderately to highly socially behind. And this quince brings necessary attention to a town that has historically been overlooked and has fallen deeper into poverty in the last 15 years.

As the years have gone by, the population has shrunk, with many opting to head to the United States. Half of the population lives in extreme poverty, and four out of ten homes don’t have access to clean drinking water. The town doesn’t have hospitals or hotels, so accommodating a large number of party-goers would be impossible. Vanguardia adds that before Rubí’s quinces, the mayor tried and failed for years to get cell phone coverage for the town. Because of Rubí’s party, Telcel technicians came to install antennas and other equipment to finally make it possible.

Some have accused State of Mexico Governor Eruviel Ávila – who offered Rubí a free trip to Valle de Bravo – of using the party for his own political gains. But as Rubí continues to receive once-in-a-lifetime opportunities, politicians aren’t focusing on the many services that could bring about a better standard of living in Villa de Guadalupe.