Thousands of refugees, mostly from Earthquake stricken Haiti are currently stuck in Tijuana. Up until recently they were eligible for Humanitarian Parole into the United States, but recent policy changes have made this much, much harder. This Christmas, all of the migrant shelters in Tijuana are full, overflowing with men, women and children who are in desperate need of accomodation, warm clothing, food, water and hygiene supplies. Many churches have become temporary shelters, with one such shelter in the hills behind Tijuana housing over 450 refugees, including at least 50 children. This emergency shelter does not have access to municipal water, and relies on trucks to deliver water on a daily basis for showers, toilets and cooking. Heavy rain this month has washed out the access road meaning that it can now only be accessed by 4WD.

According to the LA Times:

Tijuana’s shelters are overflowing.

At Padre Chava, an 88-bed shelter and soup kitchen, Haitian women and children spread blankets on the floor in between the dining room tables to sleep at night. Movimiento Juventud 2000 has pitched dozens of tents outside its 33-bed facility to accommodate more migrants.

Those who can’t find space in a shelter are bedding down in church halls, renting rooms in private homes and filling cheap hotels in the red light district, amid strip clubs and bars touting “beer morning and night.”

This is a humanitarian crisis unlike anything we have seen in recent history here in San Diego/Tijuana.

These shelters are desperately in need of:

  • Cash for rent, power, utilities and essential supplies
  • Water, including bottled water and new, food quality 55 gallon drums for water storage.
  • Warm clothes for winter including jackets and sweaters.
  • Blankets, pillows, bedding and mattresses
  • Sanitary products such as toilet paper, hand sanitiser, soap, toothbrushes, toothpaste and womens hygiene products (such as sanitary pads)
  • Baby products, especially nappies in all sizes
  • Staple foods such as bread, rice, beans, oatmeal and frozen chicken.
  • New, clean underwear in all sizes for men, women and children, as well as socks

Please note that due to Mexico’s customs requirements, it is very hard, if not impossible to bring second hand clothing across the border. It is far easier for shelters (or volunteers) to purchase these products locally for immediate delivery to those who are most in need. For those who live in Tijuana, shelters need volunteers to help build extra bathrooms, or additional shelter, kitchens etc. If you can donate products to shelters directly and deliver them yourself, please do so – if you cannot please donate cash and our volunteers will distribute them as needed. Needs are changing on a daily basis. If you speak French of Creole, you can also be of assistance especially if you can translate to Spanish.

Shelters that we know of include (we will add more to the list as our Tijuana based volunteers provide us with the information):

  • Iglesisa Embajadores de Jesus: Canon Del Alacran 4094, Colonia Divina Providencia
  • Movimiento Juventud 2000: Av. Constitución 205, Zona Norte, 22000 Tijuana, BC, Mexico
  • Desayunador Salesiano Padre Chava: Av Melchor Ocampo 700, Zona Centro, 22000 Tijuana, B.C., Mexico
  • El Ejército de Salvación: Av. Aquiles Serdan 11585, Libertad, 22400 Tijuana, Baja California Sur, Mexico
  • Shelter La Viña Del Señor:


Anonymous Donated $100
mIchael Davis Donated $25

I believe in the voice of the people working together for a better future. Creo que podemos trabajar juntos.

Cooper Williams Donated $50

¡Nadie Es Ilegal! from a fellow idealist.

Anonymous Donated $25