What community offered assistance to Enrique?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Enrique finds assistance from various and almost random people on his journey.  He faces more unkindness than kindness, but still he experiences one such moment of kindness from a village in Oaxaca,  Mexico.  In this instant, one sees a a poor village community coming to Enrique's assistance.  It is not enough to make a dent in the human suffering the millions endure on their journey, but it is plenty for Enrique on his:

His quiet vow to villagers: 'I'm going to find my mom'. The day's work is done at Las Anonas, a rail-side hamlet of 36 families in the state of Oaxaca, Mexico, when a field hand, Sirenio Gomez Fuentes, sees a startling sight: a battered and bleeding boy, naked except for his undershorts. It is Enrique. He limps forward on bare feet, stumbling one way, then another. His right shin is gashed. His upper lip is split. The left side of his face is swollen. He is crying. Gomez hears him whisper, "Give me water, please." The knot of apprehension in Sirenio Gomez melts into pity. He runs into his thatched hut, fills a cup and gives it to Enrique. "Do you have a pair of pants?" Enrique asks. Gomez dashes back inside and fetches some. There are holes in the crotch and the knees, but they will do. Then, with kindness, Gomez directs Enrique to Carlos Carrasco, the mayor of Las Anonas. 

The help offered to him by the villagers of Las Anonas in his struggle is significant. One reason it is significant is because it is in stark contrast to what he suffers throughout his journey.  Being the constant target of gangs, corrupt police officers, and those who benefit from the suffering of others, Enrique is fortified with the help he receives from the villagers.  Water, a pair of pants, physical and emotional encouragement, if only for a moment, is vastly different than what he has endured and what he will continue to endure in reuniting with his mother.  

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