Volunteers speak about reuniting undocumented families through RAICES hotline


SAN ANTONIO, TX - We are getting a never-before-seen look at the operation that's bring undocumented families who were separated at the border back together.

RAICES launched a national hotline for the undocumented, a phone number parents or children can call to find one another.

Every day people are on the other end of the phone trying to solve hundreds of cases of family separation.

Behind the walls of an unassuming building on the Westside.

"866-ESTAMOS," RAICES Executive Director Jonathan Ryan said. "Which means we are here in Spanish."

Volunteers are reuniting undocumented families that were separated at the border.

"Imagine not being at home without your parents, it's sad," Volunteer Alondra Guevara said.

Guevara is just a college student.

"Just now, I had a mother who called me cause she's super worried about her kids cause she couldn't talk to them," Guevara said.

Guevara said the mother pleaded for help to find her kids.

"I've got to leave a better United States for my granddaughters," Volunteer Gloria Gutierrez said.

Gutierrez is a retired elementary school teacher.

"The only people I've talked to are people at detention centers, to see if someone is there or not," Gutierrez said.

Today is her first day volunteering.

"I can't just sit on the couch and watch the news and not do anything," Gutierrez said.

RAICES is using the phone line and donation dollars to not only bring families together but legally represent detained undocumented immigrants.

"A person in the desert needs water," Ryan said. "A person in the middle of a famine needs food, and a refugee, a child in detention needs a lawyer."

The phone keeps ringing here.

And the work is far from over.

But to people here, it's worth it.

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