There is a brain drain in El Salvador, including Huisisilapa, but it has much more to do with the economic situation (which is violence but not usually how we think of violence as personal safety from getting killed) than encounters with gangs. There has always been violence in El Salvador but we insulate ourselves from the violence in ES just like we do here in Spokane (ie: two shootings in the area just recently and one a block from my house.)
We take precautions by using private transportation by trusted sources that many groups from the US use regularly and we travel in country together with the Salvadorans to tourist places that have a lot of police presence. The police in El Salvador don’t accept graft like in other Central American countries and are very protective. The people in Huisi are particularly vigilante as they feel very responsible for our safety. They will not let any of the counselors wander off alone.
The news lately about the children fleeing their homes and at the border are usually because they lack educational and economic (meaningful work) opportunities in their home countries. This is why we are working so hard to build and supply the library in Huisi to give students the chance at a better education which can lead to jobs. We are proud to be part of the solution as I don’t see much hope in changing the political discussion.
As parents you all have raised young people who understand that they have advantages that many in the world do not have and that they can and want to do their part to make the world better.
Be rest assured that the situation in El Salvador has not changed from last year and the year before that, etc. We will be as safe as we would be traveling in the US.
Phyllis Andersen Camp Salvador Board President