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After Five Weeks Without Water, Comcaac Community In Sonora Seeks Urgent Help

Coverage of tribal natural resources is supported in part by Catena Foundation

Members of an Indigenous community in neighboring Sonora, Mexico, say they are experiencing a critical water shortage after weeks without reliable access.

Water scarcity is a long-standing and constant issuein Punta Chueca — one of two Comcaac towns on the Sea of Cortez. But the community has now gone five weeks without water from the town’s failing desalination plant.

Water trucks sent by the government or paid for by the community are insufficient and some families lack large drums needed to store water between deliveries, leaving many without water for drinking, bathing and cleaning.

"We've really been experiencing a lot of scarcity for weeks, and that's why we're putting together this support effort for the community," said Zara Monrroy, a cultural ambassador for the tribe in Punta Chueca.

She said they're urgently pushing the the government to provide a permanent solution to the water shortages. Water officials have promised a new desalination plant, but construction is behind schedule.

Some believe the best solution is to create a well, but recent efforts have only turned up salt water.

So in the meantime, Monrroy has helped start a collective called Hax Isax , or water/life, that's cobbling together donations to hire additional water deliveries and to buy storage drums for families who don’t have them.

To learn more about the situation in Punta Chueca, The Show spoke with Kendal Blust of KJZZ's Fronteras Desk, who is based in Hermosillo, Sonora.

Hear Kendal Blust's Interview With Host Lauren Gilger On The Show

kendal-comcaac-lg-theshow-20210726.mp3

Kendal Blust, an Arizona native, reports from KJZZ’s bureau in Hermosillo, Sonora, focusing on business and economic relationships between Arizona and northern Mexico.Prior to joining KJZZ, Kendal worked at the Nogales International, reporting on border and immigration issues, local government, education and business. While working on her master’s degree at University of Arizona School of Journalism, she did stints with the Arizona Daily Star and the Tico Times in Costa Rica, and completed a thesis project about women art activists in the Arizona-Sonora borderlands.In her pre-journalist life, Kendal was a teacher, first helping Spanish high school students learn English, then heading to Tucson to teach fourth grade.When she’s not in the newsroom, Kendal enjoys getting outside for a hike or a swim, catching a good movie, hanging out with family and friends, and eating great food.