The Corner Institute: Archive news 2013-2014


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Our new Corner INSTITUTE!

Ten years ago a little barrio youth group in Malinalco, Mexico, called the Corner Project received its first request for crisis assistance from a family whose daughter Daniela had been killed in a U.S. highway accident, leaving her son Henry Daniel orphaned at 4 years old. This year the nonprofit that evolved from that group was legally incorporated as a Mexican nonprofit called The Corner Institute (Instituto del Rincón, A.C.).

And Daniela's son Henry was a prize-winning graduate of this year's summer program for migrants' children.

Sharing our methods with Mexico's teachers


We were delighted when a delegation from our state's public university asked Ellen to help design a program to train our state's public school teachers in methods to help them teach the increasing numbers of migrants' children in our state's schools.


Over a hundred primary and secondary teachers from across the state attended the resulting course: you can see part of the group in the photo at the top of this page. They were hearteningly eager to learn methods for handling the challenges of teaching children growing up separated from their migrant parents, children often suffering many displacements themselves, and we were very happy to share what we've learned in seven years of special programs for migrants' children.


Ellen with teachers
Teaching a Ministry of Education-sponsored statewide workshop for teachers of migrants' children.

Helping migrants' children overcome tragedy, beat the odds, and stay in school


Veronica, whose migrant parents brought her to the U.S. as a child, was forced to drop out of school and go to work full time after her father, Roberto Medina, died in U.S. immigration detention.


The Corner Institute located expert pro bono legal assistance in Georgia attorney Brian Spears, whose investigative work made it possible for Veronica's family to receive U.S. government compensation, which (though for only the sadly small amount of $6000) helped Veronica apply for Deferred Action status. Veronica is now putting her protected status to work with a will, working part-time to put herself through college.

Dreamer Veronica
Veronica Medina (left) received DACA status, and is studying for a degree in hotel management.



Improving our region's security and strengthening accountability


The Corner Institute has followed the news surrounding the disappearance of the 43 students in the neighboring state of Guerrero with great concern, considering what we might do to improve this country's situation. Though our community security project necessarily operates at the local level, we're hopeful that our strategy of providing basic security information not generally available to people in rural areas of Mexico could be useful in other places.


Our community security fliers are the only existing publications of this information available in an accessible form in our region, and our work in this area will continue to focus on creating a more informed, less vulnerable citizenry.


Our newest community security project is a set of simple accounting notebooks developed in coordination with our parish for the use of our barrios' festival committees.


By teaching basic accounting skills, this project promotes accountability at the local level by developing the skills needed for citizens to participate in oversight of local agencies. We've found our community accounting methods make an effective preventative measure against corruption.



Hosting seminars for students, researchers and service-providers


El Rincón has always worked in partnership with the Malinalco community, always learning from the people we serve, and always happy to bring students and scholars seeking to deepen their understanding of migrants' hometowns like Malinalco together with the people of this community.


Thus it's nothing new for us to bring people from the U.S. and elsewhere to study and sometimes teach in Malinalco. But now, as you can see from the photos, these activities have been blossoming.


We're looking forward to developing more of these seminars in years to come.



Passport fair for U.S.-born migrants' children brings Embassy's consular team to Malinalco


Contrary to what most Americans would imagine, migrants' U.S.-born children face a series of bureaucratic nightmares when their parents bring them to raise in their Mexican home communities: unless their birth certificates were certified for use in Mexico, these children are in effect undocumented.


The Corner Institute was delighted to partner with the U.S. Embassy's Citizen Services section, the American Benevolent Society and Malinalco's Municipal Government in hosting a visit from the U.S. consular team. It was our most popular service event ever, with dozens of relieved parents finally able to apply for or renew their U.S.-born children's passports.


Fulbrights at El RinconA seminar for Fulbright scholars shared tips on dealing with the challenges of conducting research in Mexico.


xoloiztzcuitli dog logoThe Aztec xoloitzcuintli logo on our community security fliers

accounting workbook

migrant family psychologyUniversity of Barcelona psychologist Isabel Cardenas led a seminar on migrants' family psychology.

USC grad studentsUniversity of Southern California grad students interviewed a migrant returnee for a policy paper on U.S.-born migrants' children.



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