Image 1 of 1
Print_BenedicteDesrus03.jpg
Canela, a resident at Casa Xochiquetzal, takes a visiting dog on a walk at the shelter on March 7, 2009. Originally from Oaxaca, she came to Mexico City to work at a very young age. She is now well known and respected in the neighborhoods that surround Casa Xochiquetzal. At 72, she suffers a number of illnesses and has Down’s syndrome. Of all the women at Casa Xochiquetzal, Canela is the only one who did not have children. Casa Xochiquetzal is a shelter for elderly sex workers in Mexico City. It gives the women refuge, food, health services, a space to learn about their human rights and courses to help them rediscover their self-confidence and deal with traumatic aspects of their lives. Casa Xochiquetzal provides a space to age with dignity for a group of vulnerable women who are often invisible to society at large. It is the only such shelter existing in Latin America. Photo by Bénédicte Desrus