Para Comer

April Garcia
Mixed Media Installation

Growing up on the border of South Texas, April would cross into Reynosa with her friends and
be deeply saddened by the poverty she witnessed. She is haunted by the memory of crossing a
bridge in Reynosa, Mexico, and seeing a woman at the bottom of the bridge holding a change
catcher with lots of small children at her side. The change catcher was a milk jug taped to a
broomstick barely long enough to reach the visitors crossing above on the bridge. The milk jug
had the bottom cut out to collect the coins and prevent them from falling to the dirt below. She
would raise the broomstick up towards the people and yell “Para Comer” (To Eat) to beg for
money. Mexico has suffered from the effects of poverty and food insecurity for decades and is
still alive in the streets of Mexico today. Often, little children walk the streets looking for a way to
pay for their next meal for their family. The children walk the street with boxes of chiclet gum
looking to sell them for whatever amount of change they can get. April’s work is a reminder of
the everyday struggles along the Mexican border and the families and children that it affects.