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Mixteco/Indigena Community Organizing Project

Who We Are

MICOP serves Ventura County's indigenous Oaxacan immigrant community through a variety of programs designed to improve access to healthcare and educational services while fostering a sense of cultural pride and self-sufficiency. Our outreach consists of five basic elements: 1) Monthly community meetings featuring health-education presentations, children's programs, culture-sustaining projects, and the distribution of food, clothing and healthcare items; 2) Infant care (Bebe Sano) classes taught in the Mixteco language, with ongoing train-the-trainer programs to prepare Mixteco speakers to deliver classes in community settings; 3) Basic literacy classes for Mixteco speakers; 4) Healthcare interpreter training programs to prepare Mixteco speakers to serve as interpreters in medical facilities, social service agencies and the courts; 5) Outreach to the English- and Spanish-speaking communities to heighten community awareness and sensitivity to cultural issues. 20,000 indigenous Mixtecs from the southern Mexico state of Oaxaca live and work in Ventura County. Facing extreme poverty and bleak employment prospects in their native region, many Mixtecs have come to California in search of agricultural work. These hardworking young families are linguistically and culturally isolated: many speak neither English nor Spanish, but only their indigenous language, Mixteco. As a result, they face exploitation and discrimination on the job, in housing, and in the marketplace, despite the fact that they are making a vital contribution to the region's economy. Since its founding in 2001, MICOP has developed a relationship of trust and understanding with Ventura County's immigrant Oaxacan community. Our programs and services are designed to give Mixtecs in the County the tools, knowledge and confidence needed to become successful, self-sufficient members of the broader community.

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