the chocon lopez family
Elias and Santiaga, and their three children used to live in el Chipoton. Santiaga was married before knowing Elias, she suffered from sexual and physical violence with her ex-husband who beat her constantly, and when she left him, she was pregnant with her second daughter. Santiaga remained alone for eight years until she met Elias and decided to start a family. Elias adopted the two eldest children of Santiaga, Elias takes care of the children of Santiaga as their own. They are actually living in a piece of land that Elias inherited from his parents, there are two more families living there.
Elias works in a recycling plant sorting scrap and getting a salary ($42) per week while Santiaga works in el Tejar making and selling tortillas earning a salary of about ($7) per day. They have two children who currently attend school, however they may only be able to send the youngest child to school this year because they do not have enough funds to support both in school. The youngest girl is in the first grade, she is studying at San Miguel el Tejar Public School. They used to live in a house built with adobe, cinder blocks and corrugated metal sheets, with a dirt floor, this house is very old and deteriorated since they do not have money to make repairments.
They have access to running water and electric service; however, they do not have a sewer system so they use an outdoor john. They also have a room that they use as a kitchen. They were in need of a new home since they suffered from cold weather during the night, along with leaks and moisture during the rainy season. They told us that their economic situation is so poor they are not able to cover all their needs, and sometimes they do not have enough to eat. But because of CASA they are able to spend their money on food!