Extortion Leaves a Community Broken

La extorsíon— extortion— is defined as the practice of obtaining something—especially money—through force or threats. Though it is familiar to us here, for many of the people of Ciudad Juárez, the term carries a burdensome weight— associated with memories of often terrifying and life-altering moments. Extortion has been knit into the fabric of daily life in Juárez for decades. It … Read More

The Missing Women of Juárez Cannot be Silenced

In the early 1990’s, women of Ciudad Juárez began disappearing. The circumstances were dubiously similar—she was walking home, leaving work, going to get groceries—the ending was always the same—she was never heard from again and her body was never found. Femicide is a term that entered Mexican federal law in 2012 in order to describe killings such as these. It … Read More

The Search to Empower the Children

A spotlight moved overhead Juárez in 2012 when the Bordertown was declared the deadliest city in the world. A center for drug-trafficking activities, Juárez was notorious for crime and corruption for several decades—it was not, however, known for that extreme level of lethalness. The violence began in 2008, with the arrival of a drug cartel, known as the Sinoaloa Cartel. Long-term, bitter … Read More

How Much Longer?

How much longer?  This is the question that we found ourselves asking after our trip to Amor Orphanage in Juarez, Mexico last week.  How much longer can the orphaned children live in these conditions? There are holes in the roof, not enough room for everyone to sleep, and non-functioning bathrooms. Juarez is a city that has been torn apart by … Read More

How it Started

In 2010 Cody Persell traveled to El Paso, Texas to help with a church’s leadership training. During that trip Cody first saw the lights of Juarez across the border, and he knew that he needed to go. At the time, Juarez was ranked one of the most dangerous cities in the world. Many people told Cody he was crazy for … Read More