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Empowering marginalized Mexican communities via the Paz Paz Bus

LatinaLista — Three years ago, a collaborative team of Mexican educators, engineers, artists and actors pooled their skills and created a program where they went into rural Mexican communities, lived with the people and taught them basic eco-sustainable practices like how to harvest rainwater and build biodigesters that convert waste into gas.

The Paz Paz Bus, which will take artists, engineers and educators to marginalized communities around Mexico.

While some members of the group focused on teaching the men of the villages the environmental mechanics, other group members worked with the women and the children of the villages and shared their talents for music, art, theater and gardening. What transpired was something unimaginable to both the villagers and the team. It was an empowerment that transformed everyone of all ages.

The team challenged themselves to take this unique program to other rural villages and underserved urban communities but they needed something to house them and the program as they traveled from place to place. At that moment, they found an old school bus and rechristened it the Paz Paz Bus.

The Paz Paz team’s artistic mural adorns the wall of one rural Mexican village.

Taking the French meaning for the term “paz paz,” it means having the ability to go anywhere, a key that serves as a pass into a place. This is how the team saw their project — going into any community and their colorful bus would be their key.

The group is currently fundraising on ideame to get enough money to fix the bus and outfit it with the necessary equipment they will need to take on their journeys to uplift people who have been marginalized by society.

The goal of the fundraiser is $10,000 and there are only a little over 40 days left to raise the money.

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