Mexico invites 200 students from California to “reconnect with their roots”

University students of Mexican origin may spend five weeks in Mexico as part of a program of cultural immersion and volunteer work

Mexican-American students attending the university or community college in California will have the opportunity to “reconnect with their roots” in Mexico, under a new federal government program.

This initiative aims to bring 200 young people who are children or grandchildren of Mexicans to different cities in Mexico so that they know or rediscover the culture of their origins and participate in a voluntary work program in the communities.

The intention of the so-called Program of Cultural Immersion and Volunteering is for these university students to strengthen their ties with the country, said Gaspar Orozco, consul attached to Mexico in San Diego.

“That they return to Mexico and recognize themselves in that country is in some way like recovering them,” he said.

“Even if they do not stay in Mexico it is very important that they know the reality of the country and get involved in these projects. That will give them a better vision of the world that at the same time strengthens them in a formative way. “

During the five weeks of this program (July 8 to August 10), participants will visit different communities of Jalisco, Michoacán, Oaxaca, Puebla, Yucatán and Zacatecas, as well as Mexico City.

This is because the majority of Mexican immigrants who live in the United States are from these states.

“Ideally, they should return to the communities where they originally came from,” Orozco said.

In each of the communities there will be different educational activities, including Spanish workshops, in case it is requested.

As regards cultural immersion, forums will be held on handicrafts, awareness of the environment in protected areas and development of sports, as well as visits to museums and archaeological sites.

The voluntary work part covers five modalities:

Educational , where students could teach English or science to children in the community.

Community development , which includes social economy activities with small producers or artisan groups.

Environment , for works in reserves related to mitigation, preservation or sustainable economy activities.

Business promotion , so that participants know the processes of workshops or micro-enterprises and can develop a business plan for export.

Sports , for its promotion and promotion of physical health in the communities.

The students will be protected at all times, as the municipal and state authorities will take care of their safety during their stay, said Consul Orozco.

The program is open to young people of Mexican origin (children or grandchildren of Mexicans), between 18 and 30 years old, who are students of any university or community college in California. Those interested should write a letter stating their reasons for participating in the program.

For this first year, the call is limited only to California, although it is not ruled out that in the future, the same will be done in other entities of the United States.

“The idea is that this grows, this is the first one, that’s why we care a lot about the young Mexican-Americans coming up,” Orozco said.

“Mexico benefits because that talent comes, realizes the potential and from there many possibilities can arise,” he added.

The Mexican government will support the students with the lodging and transportation expenses in Mexico, and it is only required that each participant pay their plane tickets.

However, those who require assistance to cover this expense can make the request at the consulate and the Institute of Mexicans Abroad (IME) will analyze case by case, either to partially or fully cover the price of the ticket.

For more information, you can consult the site http://ime.gob.mx/intercambio

Source: sandiegouniontribune

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