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Learning Objectives

1) Understand the history of Maclovio, how residents came to reside there, and their current situation 

2) Identify barriers residents face as a result of their history and their relationship or lack thereof with the government 

3) Critically think about the role FISH plays in the community and how FISH can have a wider impact

Foundation of the Community

  • 25 families of farmers founded the community in April 1988

  •  They named their community after Maclovio Rojas, a Mixteco (member of an indigenous people of southern Mexico) leader who had been fatally struck by a car in the San Quintin Valley in 1987.

  • Those who can afford them live in brick houses. Those with less, build their houses of laminate, wood and even cardboard.

  • Since the residents do not have the necessary documents, the federal and state governments considered the settlement to be illegal in the past.  Thus, they received no governmental support. However, as of recently the community of Maclovio Rojas has been officially recognized by the Mexican Government. 

  • To build the schools and social centers, the majority of Maclovio’s residents give money or construction materials. The cooperation is voluntary. They also hold community meetings where important decisions are made by those who want to participate. 

Source: Maclovio Rojas: 20 years of struggle for dignity

Maclovio’s Current Situation

Health Care Related Information:

  • There is a lack of high quality medical attention. 1-2 weeks for a general check up. 1-2 months for vaccinations. They don't treat severe health conditions. 

    • “It takes a lot of time, you get there at 2 in the morning and you wait until noon to see the doctor and not everyone can afford to do so”

  • They have struggled visiting the health clinic because it is only open during the times they work.

    • ”By going to the doctor you are losing time and money because you are unable to go to work because you are seeking medical attention”

  • There are private doctors that can get you seen within 1-3 days but it is expensive

    • “They are expensive, and they still need to buy the medicines which are even more expensive.​


Source: FISH Focus Group 3 Part 1 and Part 2

US Relations: 

  • The immigration policies in the US are really affecting their community. Either in the people that leave for a better life in the US, or the people who are deported and sent back.  

  • The commercial policies affect their factories because the costs go up due to US and Mexican policy and worker salaries go down.  


Source: FISH Focus Group 3 Part 1 and Part 2


General Living Conditions:

  • 20-30% of residents are temporary

  • o  Those who don’t stay are mostly single 

  • Majority of people work in factories or own market pop-up shop 

  • Maclovio is not recognized as legal by the government and homes are considered illegal. This creates extra housing insecurity as residents could be displaced by the government seeking more land for factories. 

  • Without government support, some places have no electricity or water. The area was originally supposed to be industrial and as a result of the factory gas, contamination is a major concern. 

  • The demographic makeup of Maclovio is primarily single moms with children as many husbands end up leaving.


Source: FISH interview with Nahomy 



  • People are afraid of getting sick. The majority of people use masks and businesses use hand sanitizer and social distancing 

  •  Churches and schools are still closed indefinitely. 

  • The community center has basic health services such as vaccines and check ups, but there are still major limits to their care as many residents fear going to clinics. 

Source: FISH interview with Doña Hortensia

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