The supplies will be sent to Ecuador’s coastal regions devastated by a massive 7.8 earthquake. Photo:teleSUR
By teleSUR English
One of the oldest Latino gangs, which now considers itself a social movement, is lending a hand to the relief effort in Ecuador.
In the neighborhood of Turubamba Bajo, the Latin Kings have been collecting donations in their local church for victims of Ecuador’s earthquake.
They have spent 12 hour-days organizing food, water, medicines and clothing to send to the country’s most devastated coastal cities.
Largely stigmatized in Ecuador as criminals, the group actually works on a variety of social intitaitves, including youth development, microfinancing projects, and community education.
The Almighty Latin King and Queen Nation, or the Latin Kings, is the oldest and largest Latino gang in the United States. They developed an international presence in Latin American countries, such as Ecuador, Puerto Rico, Peru and Mexico.
In 2007, Ecuador President Rafael Correa legalized the group and publicly recognized their community work.
They now work in collaboration with the government various social projects.
Still, they receive constant discrimination.
The Latin Kings are still considered criminals by many despite their community work. Photo:teleSUR
The Latin Queens play an important role in community projects within the organization. They also develop independent initiatives around women’s rights. Photo:teleSUR
The Latin Kings colors are black and gold—black representing death and gold representing life. Photo:teleSUR
A dozen members of the Latin Kings toss donations in a chain curving from the church storage room to a truck parked outside. Photo:teleSUR
A member rests after packing dozens of boxes of donations into the truck. Photo:teleSUR
One member catches his breath in front of the filled truck with the symbolic Latin King’s crown on his T-shirt. Photo:teleSUR
After days of hard work, the Latin Kings collected a hundred bags and boxes of supplies from the neighborhood of Turubamba Bajo. Photo:teleSUR
A member throws the cord to his “brother” to start tying up the truck before departing to the city’s historical center. Photo:teleSUR
The Latin Kings are also present in Puerto Rico, Peru and Mexico. Photo:teleSUR
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