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Puerto Vallarta • Riviera Nayarit 

What's Happening, Success Stories and Needs at the Banderas Bay Women's Shelter

David Zude - Banderas Bay Womens Shelter
December 14, 2016

Did you know?

Carolina, Huichol Woman

Approximately 50% of the women who are to the shelter are from indigenous tribes such as Cora, Huichol and Purépecha. Indigenous women are particularly marginalized in many communities. About one-third of people who speak an indigenous language are illiterate, which is three times the national average. Still, the illiteracy rates for women are 20 per cent higher than for their male counterparts.

This pattern can be seen across a broad range of socio-economic indicators, including education, employment, earnings and income. In addition to persistent poverty and lack of access to health services, which more markedly affects indigenous women, they also suffer domestic violence. Although indigenous women are increasingly migrating themselves, males who migrate to cities in search of work sometimes leave women abandoned and with increased economic hardship.

Alcoholism, child abuse and incest are also reported as significant problems affecting indigenous families. Women are also more vulnerable to exploitation by their employers, government officials and the judicial system. According to the 2005 National Household Survey, indigenous women had about half as much education and were less likely to speak Spanish than indigenous men.

What's happening

Several months have gone by since the last newsletter was sent out. I apologize for not keeping everyone informed about the shelter. The workload this year is very heavy.

We are happy to report that thanks to your support and a grant from the Mexican Federal Government we have a full staff this year including a director, administrative assistant, social worker, adult psychologist, child psychologist, teacher, 3 nurses, a part time nutritionist and a cook. This staffing allows us to provide the very best of services to the women and their children.

The shelter has been full most of the year and has been a very busy place. The women stay very busy with their sessions with the psychologist, working on their life plan with the social worker, sewing classes, baking classes, computer classes, English classes and pedicure/manicure classes.

The children stay very busy as well with home school, their sessions with the child psychologist, computer classes and English classes. Some of the youth are even learning how to sew and bake.

21 families have come to the shelter. We are pleased to report that none of the women that have left the shelter have returned to live with their aggressors. This speaks very highly of the services provided in the shelter, services that could not be provided without the help of the community. Thank you!

Two women who have left the shelter made the decision to live in Puerto Vallarta. We asked the community to help these families and the community responded with furniture, kitchen appliances, kitchen items, linens, clothing, food, cash and jobs. Thank you so much for helping these families to start a new life. There is so much that we can do as a community.


Consider volunteering your time and talents in the shelter. If you desire to cook and clean, share a musical talent or teach a special skill please contact

Upcoming Events

Christmas at the shelter. A very short time ago I asked a few wonderful people, whom I’m sure would prefer to remain anonymous, to help us out for Christmas. The response has been great! Thank you to those who have provided gifts and to those who have collected them. This will be the first Christmas for many people in the shelter.

What a Drag is coming again! February 18, 2017 is the date. The event will be held once again in ACT II Entertainment Stages. The event planning team will no doubt provide some excellent entertainment in 2017. Support Banderas Bay Women’s Shelter by attending this event. If you cannot attend you can still support the shelter by being a sponsor. Sponsorships will be available after January 1, 2017. Tickets are 500 pesos for general seating and 800 pesos for VIP seating which includes a pre party on the roof. Tickets go on sale January 15, 2017. Don’t wait to get your tickets, they sold out very quickly last year. Check out the event on Facebook at What a Drag 2017 and the event website.

Our website, Compassion for the Family, has been updated and is now available in Spanish and English. Please check it out.


One time and recurring donations can be made through Paypal on the website,. Donations can also be sent to Compassion for the Family, 115 13th Street SE, Altoona, IA 50009 or by writing Donations received from U.S. or Mexican citizens are tax deductible.
Thanks to PDI Companies for their continued support. You can visit their official site at PDI Companies.

This content was submitted by a member of the community. We'd like to hear from you, too! To share stories, photos, video or events for our calendar, please send them here.

  Learn more about Banderas Bay Women’s Shelter

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