“It’s quite difficult to describe what I’m experiencing. I’ve never before embedded this deeply within the migrant experience, and always relied on the news and personal stories to understand what’s going on.”
-Derrick Gilday, performing artist
In October, 2018, Clowns Without Borders USA continued its collaboration with Mexican social circus Llaven Nü and Palhaços sem Fronteiras Brasil. This tour followed the migrant caravan route, heading from south to north. At the end of the tour, CWB – USA participated in a human rights forum in Mexico City. Additional project partners included: Programa de Asuntos Migratorios de la Universidad Iberoamericana: PRAMI; and Cracovia 32. Participating clowns are: Darina Robles (Mexico), founder of Llaven Nü; Aline Moreno (Brazil), co-founder of Palhaços sem Fronteiras Brasil; Pao (Mexico); and Derrick Gilday (USA).
This tour aimed to promote and celebrate hospitality within communities hosting transitory migrants and migrant shelters. The clowns performed for those who walk from Central American countries (including Honduras, Nicaragua, Guatemala, etc.) through Mexico to seek asylum in the United States. Additionally, CWB – USA and collaborators aimed to build solidarity between migrants and host communities.
Ongoing dispossession and violence in Central America and Mexico, combined with the United States’ legacy of economic and military interference, create a draconian environment for migrants and refugees. As people flee their communities and undertake the arduous walk north, they’re exposed to exploitation, coercion and harm. For many migrants, refugees and asylum seekers, the risks are worth a chance for peace and security. Within an increasingly intolerant, xenophobic and ultra-nationalist global climate, CWB and its collaborators use laughter and levity to find common ground within migrant and host communities.
CWB – USA follows United Nations naming conventions for all countries, nations, and territories, along with the Declaration of the Rights of the Child and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. To read more about our Code of Ethics, click here.