Expats who have begun initiatives to assist their communities hit hard by during Covid-19 quarantines often end up forming connections with local Spanish-speaking residents who help them identify neighbors in need.
Expats Jenny and Steve McGee moved to Centenario, a community in La Paz, Baja California Sur, barely two months before shutdowns began. As strict quarantines put thousands of area residents out of work and hungry, the McGees decided to help their neighbors by forming Food for Families.
“Within three weeks, we saw a desperate need here in La Paz and neighboring areas,” said Steve McGee.
New in town, their challenge was finding the people who needed help. Their campaign took off once they began working with the owners of local businesses, Mexican locals who helped the McGees identify and spread the word to over 50 families it now provides with regular care packages. To date, the group has raised US $7,000 and provided over 1,000 such packages, or despensas.
In Cabo San Lucas, the Los Cabos Missions for Christ, founded in 2017 by Brian and Jacqueline Ruple of Ohio, has been steadily addressing residents’ needs since the destructive flooding caused that year by Tropical Storm Lidia. In the face of widespread joblessness caused by the Covid-19 shutdown, they began providing despensas of food and other supplies to about 400–500 families with the help of local pastors.