Dr. Alejandro Nava has been awarded the 2023 Mellon-Fronteridades Faculty Fellowship for the project "Asylum and Humanitarianism Along the Arizona Border"
The project examines how southern Arizona communities of faith, non-profit organizations, local and county officials, as well as a wide swath of individual volunteers, have responded to the rapid increase in asylum seekers crossing the U.S.-Mexico border after 2014, especially since 2018. Doctors Oglesby and Nava propose a collaborative project with Casa Alitas, southern Arizona’s largest migrant respite center, to document the stories of this community mobilization over the past decade. Oglesby and Nava will also go beyond Casa Alitas to include the experiences of other shelter spaces in Tucson and along the border. They focus on the experiences of those who have mobilized to provide care: How have changes along the border in the past years reshaped humanitarian action, and how has this, in turn, contributed to processes of community building in our region? We propose artistic and pedagogical means of dissemination of this research, as well as scholarly articles and essays.