Pope Francis donated $500,000 to aid Central American migrants in Mexico, the Vatican has announced.
The money will be used for housing, food and necessities for the migrants. The funds will be split among 27 projects in 16 Mexican dioceses and religious congregations, according to a Vatican statement reported on CNN Saturday.
“Men and women, often with young children, flee poverty and violence, hoping for a better future in the U.S. However, the U.S. border remains closed to them,” a spokesman for the Peter’s Pence Collection, the Pope’s charity arm, said in a statement.
The near 75,000 migrants from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala that arrived in Mexico in caravans have been “stranded, unable to enter the US, without a home or livelihood,” it said.
The Catholic Church said it hosts thousands of these migrants in hotels within dioceses or congregations.
“Media coverage of this emergency has been decreasing and as a result, aid to migrants by the government and private individuals has also decreased,” the Vatican said.
Thirteen projects have already been approved for aid, including in Nuevo Laredo, Tijuana and Nogales, on the U.S. border. The remaining 14 projects are still undergoing the approval process, according to the release.