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VICE News

This woman cares for more than 1,200 kids of parents at risk of deportation

Nora Sándigo is helping undocumented families prepare for the worst.

by Ana Sebescen and Krishna Andavolu
Jun 28 2018, 6:15pm

The Trump administration's hard-line approach to immigration enforcement has left many undocumented parents afraid for their families. But one woman has helped thousands of them prepare for the worst-case scenario: deportation.

Nora Sándigo, a Nicaraguan immigrant now living in Miami, holds power of attorney for more than 1,200 American children. After she fled the civil war in her home country when she was just 16, Sándigo established a foundation to serve young citizens born to undocumented parents, who are at risk of arrest and deportation.

Sándigo serves as a contingency plan for undocumented parents in the event that ICE deports them. She shares responsibility for the kids and also handles their basic care in the event their parents can't.

“In many homes, the mom or dad was deported. So there are shortages, and they need someone to bring them food,” Sándigo told VICE News during one of the frequent grocery shopping trips she makes on behalf of the families.

Last year, ICE deported more than 80,000 people, and as arrests and interior removals rise across the country, so have the number of children in Sándigo's care. VICE News spoke with her about what it's like to pick up the pieces after families get split up.

This segment originally aired June 20, 2018 on VICE News Tonight on HBO.