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Help Sisters Transform a Shelter for Families in Tijuana

The Situation

The Instituto Madre Assunta shelter in Tijuana was not meeting the needs of its residents, so Sister Albertina and her team searched for a new property. This new location is more economical, has more rooms, a safer location and a beautiful outdoor space. The team is excited to now begin making the place a home and design the spaces to work for the needs of the residents!

The Sisters’ Response

Sister Albertina’s Space Transformation Ideas for Madre Assunta:

  1. Chapel: It mainly involves aspects of construction; demolishing a wall to enlarge the room, installing the sanctuary and a door, as well as painting the walls.  She submitted a budget for these renovations that are around $ 1,250 USD. Additionally, she would like benches and a stained-glass window (I attached the image she wants to use for this piece)
  2. Living room for mothers and their children: resting space with individual but comfortable seats. As an innovative aspect, she wishes that there were hammocks or a kind of hanging cribs(?) right over the seats, which the mothers could swing(?) the babies while they are resting. She also would like a cabinet to storage board games and some craft supplies. Additionally, some folding tables and chairs for when they carry out an activity or workshop.
  3. Computer lab: currently there is a hall with 3 cubicles and 3 computers (only one works). She would like to improve that space “virtual window” to opportunities with more computers to have access to online classes (especially English classes), virtual legal or psychological advisories, among other activities.
  4. A bathroom with changing space for babies and a small toilet for toddlers. She would like to have a bathroom with cabinets for baby stuff and a table to be able to change the babies’ diapers.
  5. Cubicles for one-one-one sessions: Instead of her initial idea of the “welcome point”, she said that she would like to have some cubicles for individual sessions with advisors (social workers, lawyers, psychologist).

Funds Needed

Initial Cost Projection, including construction:

Pesos MexicanosUSD (aprox.)
Bathroom with a changing station for babies$37,000$1,800
Living room$37,000$1,800
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