By Costa Rica Relief Team (Originally in Spanish)
Thousands of Cubans, men, women and children, are currently stranded at the Costa Rican borders. Heading to the United States in hopes to improve their economic situation, they have been unable to continue due to border restrictions. The National Emergency Commission of Costa Rica is providing them with food and shelter, but personal care items are still in need. Deeply concerned about the refugees, Supreme Master Ching Hai provided relief funds, of which our Costa Rica Association members have used US$13,591 for relief work on the Costa Rican borders.
Relief Efforts at the Costa Rica and Nicaragua Border – December 17, 2015
On December 17, our Costa Rica relief team worked with the Global Logistics Service (GLS) department of the Red Cross and visited eight refugee shelters at the border. We distributed approximately 1,700 kits containing towels, soap, toilet paper, toothpaste, toothbrushes, feminine hygiene supplies and razors for adults, and 50 kits containing diapers, crayons and toys for children. In addition, we shared booklets of Master’s poetry anthology Silent Tears in Spanish.
The refugees, with tears in their eyes, told us of their difficult situations and the obstacles they have faced. They felt great comfort to receive such opportune help, knowing that Supreme Master Ching Hai is caring for them.
For this relief, we spent US$7,967 of Master’s fund. The remainder will be used for further relief work at the border of Costa Rica and Panama.
Assisting African, Haitian and Cuban Refugees at the Costa Rica and Panama Border – December 22, 2015
The same situation occurred at the southern border of Costa Rica near Panama, where Cuban refugees faced restrictions from border access and were stranded. During our relief efforts, our team discovered refugees were also coming from Africa and Haiti, and are in dire need of assistance as well.
On December 22, 2015, the first shelter we visited near the Panama border was Escuela Confraternidad Paso Canoas, which hosted approximately 100 refugees from Africa and Haiti, who seemed to have no opportunity to leave the border soon. Our Costa Rican relief team prepared 800 kits of personal care items with the kind help of several people there. Each of the refugees at Escuela Confraternidad Paso Canoas received kits.
Every kit contained two rolls of toilet paper, two soaps, one towel, one toothbrush, one tube of toothpaste, one shaving machine, one pack of feminine hygiene supplies and one bag of baby diapers. Vegan cookies were also distributed to all refugees, and crayons, coloring books and toys for children. In addition, we shared booklets of Master’s poetry anthology Silent Tears in Spanish. The relief supplies were purchased using US$5,624 from the fund provided by Master.
We distributed the remaining kits to the refugees at Escuela de San Jorge Confraternidad and Escuela de la Cuesta Juan Lara Alfaro shelters, in cooperation with the Border Police officers. Approximately 170 kits were distributed to the Cuban refugees there.
The last stop was on the streets near the Costa Rican Immigration Offices, where more than 550 Cuban refugees were living in tents and cardboard shelters with their families.
Thanks to the assistance of the police, distribution was carried out in a police truck, and refugees showed the deepest gratitude for the generosity of Supreme Master Ching Hai. Many of them applauded and shed tears when they were told that Master can feel their sufferings and hear their prayers, and due to that, help was sent to comfort them.
Our relief efforts went smoothly with the blessing and immense grace of Master, leaving our team, as always, with new a understanding of universal love. Our deep gratitude to Master for Her infinite compassion for those in need. Our heartfelt prayers for the refugees in Costa Rica. May their situation improve soon as they journey to uplift their lives.
Expenditures by Supreme Master Ching Hai for Refugee Relief Work at the Costa Rican Borders
|Relief purchases (towels, soap, toilet paper, toothpaste, toothbrushes, feminine hygiene supplies, razors, diapers, crayons and toys) for refugees at the border of Costa Rica and Nicaragua||7,967||A|
|Food, cookies and relief purchases (soap, toothbrushes, toothpaste, toys, towels, toilet paper, razors, feminine hygiene items, diapers, and bags) for refugees at the border of Costa Rica and Panama||5,624||B|
Refugee Relief Work – December 22, 2015
Refugee Relief Work – December 17, 2015