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TUESDAY November 16, 2021: 'Border Refugees' by ZUMA Press award winning photographer Raquel Natalicchio who has been covering the migrant situation along the US-Mexico border: The US recorded more than 1.7 million interdictions of migrants along the southern border during the past 12 months, the highest figure of any fiscal year in history. Recently over 10,000 Haitians, would-be refugees fleeing an island nation that is rocked by political instability and economic depression, converged near Del Rio, Texas, and sought to stream into the US, creating a massive migrant camp under an overhead bridge in Coahuila, Mexico. With the US border recently re-opened many fleeing from violence and poverty at home, are again flooded with hope asylum will be granted. Currently in Tijuana around 1,0000 migrants live in the grubby and crowded El Chaparral camp, where dozens of families eek out an existence in flimsy tents. The government has cut off the electricity, stopped running water and removed bathrooms in the camp, leaving people with no way to bathe, wash their clothes or even cook food. With aid organizations not being allowed to drop off donations and supplies, many refugees believe they are being starved out of the camp. Welcome to: 'Border Refugees'
© Story of the Week #814: TUESDAY November 16, 2021: 'Border Refugees' by ZUMA Press award winning photographer Raquel Natalicchio who has been covering the migrant situation along the US-Mexico border: The US recorded more than 1.7 million interdictions of migrants along the southern border during the past 12 months, the highest figure of any fiscal year in history. Recently over 10,000 Haitians, would-be refugees fleeing an island nation that is rocked by political instability and economic depression, converged near Del Rio, Texas, and sought to stream into the US, creating a massive migrant camp under an overhead bridge in Coahuila, Mexico. With the US border recently re-opened many fleeing from violence and poverty at home, are again flooded with hope asylum will be granted. Currently in Tijuana around 1,0000 migrants live in the grubby and crowded El Chaparral camp, where dozens of families eek out an existence in flimsy tents. The government has cut off the electricity, stopped running water and removed bathrooms in the camp, leaving people with no way to bathe, wash their clothes or even cook food. With aid organizations not being allowed to drop off donations and supplies, many refugees believe they are being starved out of the camp. Welcome to: 'Border Refugees'
Getting belongings into water resistant plastic bags on the river bank, a migrant family waits their turn to cross over to the U.S from Mexico. Thousands of Haitian migrants gathered at the US-Mexico border seeking to cross the Rio Grande and find refuge in the US.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
Migrants cross back and forth along the Rio Grande river from Mexico to the U.S. Over 10,000 migrants are sheltering under a bridge in Del Rio, Texas, but gather supplies, such as food, from Mexico.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
Wading across the river and floating their belongings with them, a migrant family crosses from Mexico to the U.S. Currently, over 10,000 migrants are living under a bridge in Del Rio, Texas, but gather supplies, such as food, from Mexico.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
With the help a rope tied across the Rio Grande river, migrants cross back and forth from Mexico to the U.S., under the watchful eye of US border patrol.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
A migrant father plays with his son while waiting to cross the Rio Grande from Mexico to the US where nearly 10,000 migrants are being held.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
Migrants swim the Rio Grande from Mexico to the U.S as the sun sets. Thousands of Haitian migrants have appeared at the US-Mexico border seeking to cross the Rio Grande and find refuge in the US.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
A local Mexican family distributes small individual food packages to the Haitian migrants crossing between the encampment on the US side under the International bridge and the new encampment forming in Acuna, Mexico.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
A local Mexican family prepares food packages to help feed the Haitian migrants crossing between the encampment on the US side under the International bridge and the new encampment forming in Acuna, Mexico.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
A local Mexican family brings their van and offers charging ports to migrants so they are able to use their phones to contact family members in Haiti and other relatives staying in the camp.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
Two young Haitian migrant girls play on swings in a park within a newly formed migrant encampment in Acuna.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
US National guardsmen patrol a heavily guarded entrance into the encampment where thousands of Haitian asylum seeking refugees are being held under the International Bridge.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
Residents of the El Chaparral refugee camp that were present for the municipal census were issued identification cards. Without the ID card no one can enter or exit the camp. Children under the legal age are also not allowed to leave the camp unless with their parents.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
The 'El Chaparral' refugee camp is said to be more crowded than ever with a current population of around 1,000. Although local authorities stand guard at the entrance/exit, migrants say they provide no security for them within the camp.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
Families and friends are separated by the new fence that surrounds the El Chaparral refugee camp in Tijuana. Many migrants have been displaced due to not being in the camp when the municipal census was conducted and ID cards given out. Many say they were working or out buying supplies.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
Municipal police walk through the El Chaparral refugee camp with drug sniffing dogs, an element not previously seen at camps along the border.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
The electricity and water were recently cut off at the El Chaparral refugee camp in Tijuana. The only light reaching the camp each night is that of nearby street lamps and the occasional car that passes. For the resident migrants these changes have not made them feel more secure, instead, they are more prone to danger without access to electricity and water.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
A boy walks along the outside of the newly erected fence surrounding the El Chaparral refugee camp in Tijuana.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
Migrants belongings hang to dry outside of a tent from within the newly fenced off El Chaparral refugee camp in Tijuana. A recent census by the local government found that 40% of the 769 people staying at the camp at El Chaparral were minors.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
A girl who's mother works with The Refugee Health Alliance (RHA), plays with a balloon in the shower area of the clinic. The RHA clinic provides medical attention, counseling, clothes and showers for men, women and children in need.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
BRISA MARTIN DEL CAMPO is a volunteer psychologist at the Refugee Health Alliance free clinic in Tijuana. The RHA clinic provides medical attention, counseling, clothes and showers for men, women and children in need.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
The Del Rio - Acuna port of entry remains shut down as over 10,000 migrants are held underneath the International bridge connecting the US and Mexico.
© Raquel Natalicchio/ZUMA Press Wire
ZUMA Press photographer Raquel Natalicchio is a visual storyteller and educator currently residing in Los Angeles. Her passion for education led Raquel to work as a teaching artist for non profit after school art programs, developing photography curriculums centered around themes like self love for teen girls. In 2017, her first book was published, 'Spray for Peace', a compilation of inspirational stories and messages from LA graffiti legends to the next generation of artists. She toured nationwide with Road Trip Nation as an ambassador and motivational speaker. Recently she has focused on photo documenting social justice issues in the United States.
© ZUMA Press photographer Raquel Natalicchio is a visual storyteller and educator currently residing in Los Angeles. Her passion for education led Raquel to work as a teaching artist for non profit after school art programs, developing photography curriculums centered around themes like self love for teen girls. In 2017, her first book was published, 'Spray for Peace', a compilation of inspirational stories and messages from LA graffiti legends to the next generation of artists. She toured nationwide with Road Trip Nation as an ambassador and motivational speaker. Recently she has focused on photo documenting social justice issues in the United States.
Raquel Natalicchio ZUMA Press photographer

ZUMA Press photographer Raquel Natalicchio is a visual storyteller and educator currently residing in Los Angeles, CA. 'As a storyteller I believe in the power of image and story as having the ability to not only inspire but also expand our awareness. Images allow us to dive into all the layers of our world and gain a greater understanding of our environment and each other.' Her passion for education led Raquel to work as a teaching artist for non profit after school art programs, developing photography curriculums centered around themes like self love for teen girls. In September of 2017, her first book was published, 'Spray for Peace', a compilation of inspirational stories and messages from LA graffiti legends to the next generation of artists. She toured nationwide with Road Trip Nation as an ambassador and motivational speaker. Recently she has focused on photo documenting social justice issues in the United States. Raquel is available for assignments via ZUMA Press.:814



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