KIND’s Ciudad Juarez, Mexico Office Gathers Children and Families to Celebrate Day of the Child

May 22, 2024

More than 50 children and adolescents and their families from five different shelters across Ciudad Juarez gathered at an event hosted by KIND’s Ciudad Juarez office to celebrate Day of the Child a few weeks ago. The goal was to create an inclusive, fun space for migrating children, adolescents and their families to support their emotional well-being with cultural and recreational activities. 

Participants from Mexico, Colombia, Peru, Venezuela, Brazil, Honduras, and Cuba watched a theater performance of a play called Quiero Ser Payaso (I Want to be a Clown) put on by two actors hired by the local government’s Secretary of Culture. The clowns did not talk much and performed mainly through mime which the children loved. With exaggerated expressions and gestures, the clowns acted out various scenes and played on stage. At one point they blew up a huge balloon and passed it into the audience until one child broke the ballon and—to everyone’s surprise and delight—confetti fell out! The kids were laughing and smiling throughout.  

After the play, children and their families walked around to different stands—each participating organization, including the International Rescue Committee and Save the Children, offered educational activities or games and information about the services they offer to migrating children and families. Staff from KIND’s Ciudad Juarez Office entertained kids with a memory game with large cards on a table that kids had to turn over and try and find the matching card. One 11-year-old was really good at the game and found almost all the matches. Following the game, KIND distributed prizes, art supplies, and snacks to the kids. Each participant received a gift bag with essential items such as a toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, and a hairbrush. 

Norma Ruiz, social services supervisor at KIND’s Ciudad Juarez office who helped organize the event, said, “The event was a big success. We could tell that all the children and families were able to relax and enjoy. One mother walked up to me and said, ‘Thank you so much for doing this activity, this has been great. In the shelters, we are so stressed and don’t have many outlets to just relax and have fun.’” 

The next day, KIND’s Ciudad Juarez team led two more special events for 74 children in two different shelters. Instead of their regular psychosocial programming, KIND staff organized a special celebratory activity for Day of the Child. They brought white tee shirts that the children got to design, decorate, and paint. Kids painted the front of the shirt, and all their peers signed the back of shirt.   

KIND is grateful to be able to provide basic services and provide joy to children facing the many challenges of migration with little protection.