Miss Universe Helps Poor Kids in Mexico

Miss Universe 2010 Ximena Navarrete reaches out to help poor children in the unseen side of her hometown of Guadalajara through Children International, a U.S.-based humanitarian organization.

“It was difficult for me to see the poverty and how these families struggle to get by in the city where I grew up,” said Navarrete. “But now I have seen the life-changing work Children International is doing with children and teens in Mexico. They are giving impoverished children a chance to live better lives.”

The Mexican native recently embarked upon a 3-day visit of Guadalajara where she met with several children and their families supported by the charity. It was announced Monday.

One family she met with was Doña Maria and her 3 grandchildren – Valeria, 7, Juan, 11, and Miguel, 10, whom she supports on $100 a month. Doña Maria is concerned that her health is frail and with no other family nearby, she is worried about the welfare of the children.

Through Children International, Doña Maria’s grandchildren receive medical and dental care, educational assistance, clothing and other necessities she cannot afford.

In a country with 44% poverty rate and a city riddled with slums filled with families living on less than $1 a day, Children International provides assistance to over 15,000 poor children there.

Children International’s president and CEO Jim Cook said, “We are grateful to Miss Universe’s dedication to improving the lives of children in her hometown. Her support has brought to light the deep poverty that exists behind the scenes in Guadalajara.”

Established in 1936, Children International is a 75 year-old humanitarian organization with its headquarters in Kansas City, Missouri.

It helps more than 335,000 children and their families in 11 countries around the world including Chile, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guatemala, Mexico, Zambia, Honduras, India, the Philippines and the United States.

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Rakesh Raman