Family Reunification Campaign Caravan for the Children Returns Home

By Xela Vargas


On Wednesday October 11, the Caravan for the Children campaign facilitated a report back after traveling to Honduras and El Salvador in an ongoing effort to reunify separated migrant children with their families.


The Caravan for the Children is a San Francisco / Bay Area campaign, spearheaded by the Central American Resource Center – SF, the Chicana Latina Foundation, Galería de la Raza, Insitituto Familiar de la Raza, and community volunteers who are committed to the uncaging, reunification and healing of migrant children and families separated by the Trump era ‘Zero Tolerance Policy.’


Between 2017-21, there were an estimated 5,500+ children separated from their families from countries Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Brazil, Mexico, and some others. Of those only 767 families have been reunified.


In February of 2002, President Biden established a government task force composed of the heads of Homeland Security, Human and Health Services, Justice and the State Department called the President’s Interagency Task Force for the Reunification of Families. The Caravan for the Children campaign has taken action as “watchdogs” to hold the task force accountable for the reunification of these families, and eventual reparations.


Following a recommendation that the Task Force travel to the countries of origin– the Gov’t Task Force and Caravan for the Children traveled to meet with civil society organizations to socialize reunification efforts. New to the reunification efforts is the creation of the web portal, Together.Gov, or– where families can input their personal information in hopes of finding a match, and begin the reunification process. 


The web portal is pivotal in that it bridges an information gap, establishing potential contact between separated families – however, it raises a lot of questions surrounding accessibility. In order to be accessed, families in countries of origin need to be able to access electronics, WiFi, and to be aware of the existence of the new resource. 


Being a resource created by the US government, the web portal also incites a sense of distrust within families – the portal requires the granting of personal information. How can they trust that the same government that deported them, treated them as criminals and stole their children to then gracefully reunite them? 


The presence of the Caravan for the Children delegation was crucial in bridging the gap between the governmental task force, and the people of Honduras, and El Salvador. Olga Talamente, executive director of the Chicana Latina Foundation stated that the delegation had a huge impact in building relations as their presence assured both groups that “the community is watching.”


The delegation from Caravan for the Children returns home with optimism, and demands – the creation for the web portal is only the first step. The demands stand – uncage, reunify, heal. 

The Guardsman