A caravan of almost 200 Central American migrants, many of them trans women, has made its way to Tijuana, MX fleeing violence and transphobia in their countries of origin. Those who seek US asylum are being denied processing at the border, and most have not yet been let in by the US. These brave individuals have been forced to form a makeshift refugee camp in Mexico as they wait.

“Trans women and minors are feet away from the border and under these tarps waiting for the US government to process them to be able to apply for asylum. They are fleeing violence and seeking safety,” reports Transgender Law Center deputy director Isa Noyola, who is currently at the border with TLC legal director Flor Bermudez. They are talking with the caravan of trans women about the persecution they escaped and their current conditions. In a brief interview, when one woman was asked why she came to the US, she replied simply, “I’m hoping to rest well, and to have dreams.”

The caravan has had to create a makeshift tent city from tents and tarps, with little security.

A group of transgender women spoke to Isa and Flor in a video shared below. One of them reported, “I am fleeing from the transfemicides in Central America and we are here at the Tijuana border, waiting to be able to pass to the other side to fight for our asylum, due to so many homicides, discrimination, and aggressions against our persons for identifying as transgender women.”

“It’s cold and uncomfortable,” Isa says. “They are tired. It feels hopeless at times. The only hope they have and cling to is the chance at living a healthy life free from violence and harm.”