Syracuse resident Sheila Sicilia says the tension at the U.S./Mexico border is getting worse, so she took matters into her own hands.
"I've tried all the normal things you're supposed to do, write your Congressman, make calls and all that. It hasn't helped," Sicilia said. "We're supposed to take care of each other, they're our brother and sisters. More and more, we see our country not taking good care of many people; they're falling through the cracks and it's up to us."
The Syracuse resident landed in San Diego Wednesday evening, and got right to work in Tijuana the next day.
"People were getting frustrated and some of the caravan members, led by women, had decided a hunger strike was what they needed to do," Sicilia said.
Sicilia along with other U.S. activists, joined the Central Americans in their hunger strike and march.They had a list of demands — one of them being more asylum application approvals from the U.S. government.
"They're just people like us. They want to be in this country. They want a job; it doesn't have to be a great job. They want their children to have a better life," Sicilia said.
She says it was an emotional trip because beyond the laughs and strong connections made, there was pain.
"Heartbreaking to see these people struggling so much and so bravely. They weren't complaining. They were just trying to make do with what they had, and yet they would joke around if they had the chance," Sicilia said.
Sicilia says they would be wonderful neighbors.
"I'm hoping that we will realize these people aren't going to hurt our country. They're going to be a welcom[ing] addition, and I'm hoping we can find our humanity," Sicilia said.