The Oaxaca Mask Project Progress Report #5: Covering More Villages

First, I want to say THANK YOU to our donors AND to friends on-the-ground in Oaxaca who are making and distributing masks AND to our USA friends who are making masks and sending them to me to ship to Oaxaca. Because of YOU, this project is a success. We continue. There are many more people to cover!

That said, we are going to wrap up The Oaxaca Mask Project on May 15. After this date, we will consider ourselves COMPLETE for the moment. We will not be accepting donations after this date unless there is another virus wave that is coming. I will provide a final tally with donor names, amount raised and villages distributed to — then.

If you wish to contribute, please use this link to make your gift: paypal.me/oaxacaculture

Que Milagro! Applausa to Alvin Starkman, Oaxaca Mezcal Educational Tours, for distributing 200 masks to these villages: Santa Catarina Minas, San Baltazar Chchicapam, Rancho Blanco Guila, San Pablo Guila, San Dionisio Ocotepec, Santiago Matatlan, San Marcos Tlapazola San Martin Tilcajete, Cuilapam and Teotitlan del Valle.

Felix, Santa Catarina Minas, from Alvin Starkman

Mask maker was Rocio Bastida Cruz in San Felipe del Agua, with help from Dave Crosley.

Lidia, Santiago Matatlan, from Alvin Starkman
Francesca, Santiago Matatlan, from Alvin Starkman

Mil Gracias to Gail Pellett for teaming with me to distribute 100 masks in San Agustin Etla taxi drivers and passengers to keep villager protected when they travel to Oaxaca city. We paid her seamstress for mask making.

Made by Reina in San Jose, barrio de San Agustin Etla, from Gail Pellett

In her own words, Gail says: Hi Norma, we distributed the masks made by Reina in San Jose/San Agustin Etla to the collectivo drivers based in Etla. These drivers serve the Etla Valley and the busy highway route between Etla and Abastos in Centro.  A week or 10 days ago very few of these drivers had masks.  Yesterday we discovered many of the drivers were wearing their masks, but none of their passengers were, so they welcomed the donation of masks to distribute to customers in their cars.  The collectivos could end up being the vector of the virus, as now most of the pueblos along their routes have cases of the virus.

Also, the “village guardians” who were staffing the elaborate check-point controlling access to San Agustin Etla were using one of the “gun” thermometers that a group of our neighbors and us bought for the village. So our temps were taken on re-entry yesterday.  Onward, Gail

San Agustin Etla taxistas (taxi drivers) ready to go! from Gail Pellett

Accolades to Eric Ramirez Ramos of Zapotrek who had 200 masks made and distributed to vendors and customers in the Tlacolula Market, and to neighboring villages. Mask maker in Tlacolula is Ines Lopez Hernandez.

In the Tlacolula Market, from Eric Ramirez Ramos, Zapotrek
Lupita Zuniga Sosa of Zapotrek, hands out mask in Tlacolula Market
Tlacolula Market barbacoa vendor with mask, from Eric Ramirez Ramos, Zapotrek
Lupita and Eric, Tlacolula Market — Zapotrek heroes

Abrazos to Kari Klippen-Sierra and Rudy Sierra in San Andres Huyapam who picked up 63 masks from Kalisa Wells in Oaxaca and 50 masks from Cristy Molina Martinez in Teotitlan del Valle. The village president there asked for PPE for health clinic staff. They had none! Masks were distributed widely to others in need. Mask makers were Telarcito Lindo (Oaxaca), Hollie Taylor (Chapel Hill, NC), Sam Robbins (Columbus, Ohio) and Malena Jimenez (Teotitlan del Valle).

Kari Klippen-Sierra and Rudy Sierra, give masks to Huayapam health clinic official

Next up?

About 150 masks made in the USA arrived in Teotitlan del Valle today. Cristy Molina Martinez will be the point person for distribution. Some will go to Armando Sosa in San Pablo Villa de Mitla, to use as patterns for mask making along with several bolts of high quality 100% cotton cloth.

Most will go to Jacki Cooper Gordon, who is working with enVia Oaxaca, a foundation to get the masks distributed to people the villages the micro-financing organization works with.

I will keep you posted on this distribution network as it happens.

Jacobo and crew, San Martin Tilcajete

Today, 100 masks made by Karen Nein in Eldorado, New Mexico, arrived at the Jacobo & Maria Angeles Workshop and Studio in San Martin Tilcajete, Oaxaca. They employ over 100 people, and the masks are being put to good use there! Our project funded the DHL mask shipment.

Receiving the masks at Taller de Jacobo y Maria Angeles, San Martin Tilcajete

We have another box of 150 masks leaving my son’s home in Huntington Beach, California, tomorrow, also destined for Cristy to distribute. I am accepting more masks and high quality cotton fabric here in Durham, NC, for one final DHL shipment. I will consolidate what I receive and want to get this shipped by May 12.

Please contact me by email at norma.schafer@icloud.com to send masks for fabric. I will send you the mailing address pronto.

Reminder: We will end this phase of the project on May 15, 2020. If more help is needed beyond this, I will let you know!

Thanks to each and every one of you for your participation, generous support, love and caring for the people of Oaxaca. We appreciate you.

4 responses to “The Oaxaca Mask Project Progress Report #5: Covering More Villages

We Welcome Your Comments