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From Mexico City! Meet the ladies from Chiconautla Women’s Prison in Ecatepec, the most dangerous city in Mexico. With the help of the organizations La Cana, GivetoGive, and videographer Alex Reider, we are fortunate to share their stories from inside.

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Video Transcript:

My name is Blanca Estella.
I have been in prison for eight years now. I am from here the state of Mexico.

What is your age?
31 years old

Is there anything you would like to share about your daughter?
She is 2 years old, and she was born here in jail.

Tell me about your day with her.
Most of the days are routine with her. We wake up, have breakfast, go out and play for a little while, well, she plays, and I exercise. We eat at around 2:00 in the afternoon.We go to the patio again; I try to distract her so that she doesn’t see how life is lived in this place.

What do you worry about with your baby?
Her exit. They only allow her to stay here until the age of three. It is very worrisome, where she will go? And with who? If she is going to get the appropriate care.

Does the baby sleep with you? How many others are in your cell?
Yes, she sleeps with me. We are a total of 11 in our cell block.

How many beds are in your cell?
Six.

Do you get adequate food for the baby? Do they help you feed her?
No. They do give us food here but its not so healthy.

Do you have family that you would like to talk about?
No

Is there something on your mind you want to share?
Well… the only thing I can share is that… It has served me to be in here these last eight years and that.. I would like another opportunity to patch up my life.

Can you tell us about any opportunities for you to grow inside?
Well… There aren’t a lot, but… The only opportunities they give us at this institution is the benefits of our areas. And so that is what is done, try to cover and avoid problems. Apply ourselves to all the workshops, school, work, so that we can get the benefit to leave.

Do you have a sentence yet?
Yes, I have a sentence.

Do you have a release date?
Yes, I have a sentence of 15 years.

What brings you joy on any given day?
Right now, for the moment… my daughter.

Do you have a family in here to protect you and your daughter?
No, it’s just me and my daughter.

Is there something that you would like to share?
Well, what worries me most is my daughter. Her exit and her protection.

Can you share anything about your other children?
Yes. I have two sons. Alexander is 12 and Johnathan is 9.

Where are they?
Alexander lives with my cousin and Jonathan lives with his father

Are they nearby?
No. Well Jonathan does, he lives here in the state, but Alexander lives in Mexico City.

Do you have any other family members that are in prison?
Yes, my brother.

So, were you familiar with prison prior to coming here?
A little bit because I have already had a family member in prison before I was.

How is prison now, compared to what you thought it was?
It is difficult, the loneliness is hard.

Do you have contact with anyone on the outside?
No, my mother died and so did one of my brothers and the only one that was with me was recently incarcerated.

Is there anything else on your mind you would like to share?
Well, nothing really, but that life is not as easy as it looks.
And instead of doing things wrong, we must look for things to do.
It can be whatever, but it must be good. To walk the righteous journey. To be in prison is not pleasant.

Is there something you would like to do when you are released?
Yes, my brother and I have the idea to leave and change states and start from the bottom

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