Dear Friends of Liga MAC, an update from San Jose del Cabo:
Baja California Sur (BCS) now has Mexico’s second highestincidence rate for COVID19, second only to Mexico City (coronavirus.bcs) Most of the BCS cases have occurred in Los Cabos. Governor Carlos Mendoza Davis has declaredthat BCS has entered phase 3 (of 4) of the COVID19 crisis meaning that the state medical system is at risk of beingoverwhelmed. On April 25, the Governor issued a directivesuspending all non-essential activities until May 30, withoffences being punishable by heavy fines and imprisonment.
In response to the growing need for medical and foodsupplies, the Community Alliance of Baja California Sur (CABCS) was created and is comprised of representativesfrom businesses, charities, foundations and various levels ofgovernment (acbcs.org.mx). Cash and in-kind donations are being organized to supply personal protective equipment tohospitals and food for those in need. Food distribution beganin La Paz/Cabo San Lucas during April 13-19 and in San Jose del Cabo the week of April 20-26. Delivery volunteersregister each family, providing them a barcoded card tofacilitate future deliveries (planned every 15 days). TheMunicipal government through its DIF (Desarrollo Integral de la Familia) arm is also dispensing food to its vulnerable population – the elderly, those with disabilities, teen mothers, and now the unemployed.
The Department of Education resumed school electronicallyon April 20 and announced that classrooms are expected toreopen on June 1 and that the school year will be extended toJuly 17. Our Liga MAC junior and senior high schoolstudents receive their work via open learning television and are in contact with their teachers via What’s App. Moststudents have pay-as-you-go cellular phones and are able tophotograph their homework and send it electronically totheir teachers. Our university students on the other hand, must use the internet to receive and post their work.
Liga MAC’s staff, Elva, Consuelo, and Karen have beencanvassing our students and their families to discern theirlevel of need. With the latest directives from thegovernment, most of our families, who have already beenidentified as marginalized, will lose their sources of income. Community food distribution packages (which contain onlybasic food items and no hygiene products), have helped butwith increased demand, the system will be strained. As thecrisis continues, money for rent, electrical bills, propane, etc. will have to be found. All these demands have created notonly tangible strains but emotional ones. Our students are feeling the anxiety of uncertainty.
Liga MAC’s commitment, indeed, our mission, is to supportour 328 students through our educational program. We, theBoard and staff of Liga MAC, are committed to ensuringthat our students receive whatever help they need tocomplete their education. In these trying times, thatcommitment means grocery vouchers to purchase freshvegetables and meat or soap, bleach, disinfectant and otherhygiene products. It might mean emotional counselling orhelp to pay the electrical bill so that our students can complete and submit homework. Whatever the need, we willbe there.
On a final note, one of our Board Members is on the frontlines of battling COVID19. Dr. Mauricio Mercado chairsLiga MAC’s Health and Nutrition Program which teachesstudents about healthy lifestyles and food choices. In addition to his private practice, on weekends Dr. Mercado isthe director in charge of the IMSS Hospital in Colonia Guaymitas – one of the public hospitals in San Jose del Cabo dedicated to COVID19 triage. Last week we learned that Dr. Mercado had contracted COVID19. We are with you and your family Dr. Mercado and wish you a speedy recovery!
The economic fallout from the COVID19 pandemic is yet tobe determined but we do know that those on the lowestrungs of the socioeconomic ladder will fare the worst. Ourstudents are our hope for our community’s future. Please, ifyou can spare the funds to help these students, visit ourwebsite at ligamac.org or click on the Donate button below. If you would like to leave a comment or have a questionplease contact us email@example.com
Maria Lindenberg, President
Board of Directors, Liga MAC, A.C.