Their number one job when they come into this facility is to get these kids home.
In August, NPR was granted access to tour Southwest Key Program’s Houston shelter, Casa Sunzal, which houses up to 223 youth from 16-17 years old.
Houston Public Media noted that the shelter was adorned with international flags and bright decorations, similar to a high school, and dorm areas have three beds to a room resembling a summer camp. With recreation areas available with Foosball, pool tables and a soccer field.
“The staff at the shelter, teachers, clinicians and case managers, are all working toward the common goal to safely reunify these youth with their families,” said Benjamin Aguilar, associate vice president of Southwest Key’s Houston region, which includes El Paso and San Antonio. For Aguilar, the work is personal: “I was an unaccompanied minor. I came into this country, my parents had already come here.”
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