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Mexico 2019 © John Moore/Getty Images


Bearing Witness: Stories from the Central American Migration Crisis

Mexico 2019 © John Moore/Getty Images

November 08, 2018

7:30PM-9:00PM CT

Event type: In-person

Holly Auditorium University of Texas Health Sciences Center

7703 Floyd Curl Drive

San Antonio, TX 78229

Get Directions

Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) presents a panel discussion on public perceptions of the global migration crisis, with a focus on images and stories of people forced to flee extreme violence and poverty in Central America. Panelists will share their experiences from the field, caring for displaced people and documenting the medical and mental health challenges they face.

Governments around the world are increasingly closing their borders and turning their backs on vulnerable people at a time when the number of forcibly displaced people is at a record high of 68.5 million. Refugees and asylum-seekers are often branded as criminals and terrorists, despite the fact that many of these people are themselves survivors of violence and persecution by armed groups. Under the US government’s harsh “zero tolerance” border policy, thousands of people fleeing violence are being prosecuted, detained, and deported for the fully legal act of seeking asylum.

Documenting the stories of individuals who have risked everything in pursuit of safety is essential to countering narratives that dehumanize refugees and migrants. Join Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), as we discuss the importance of bearing witness and explore ways that journalists, activists, and humanitarian aid workers can share these stories with a wider public.


Advocating for patients on the move in the Northern Triangle of Central America

This free event is open to the public and fully accessible. This discussion is part of our programming around “Forced From Home,” a free interactive exhibition about the global refugee crisis, open in San Antonio, TX, from November 4-11. Find out more at

Can't make this in-person? Register to view the webcast

Join us 6:30 PM for light refreshments at our pre-event reception.


Norma Martinez, host of “Fronteras,” a Texas Public Radio program exploring the changing culture and demographics of the southwest.


John Moore is a senior staff photographer and special correspondent for Getty Images. He has photographed in 65 countries on six continents and was posted internationally for 17 years, first to Nicaragua, then India, South Africa, Mexico, Egypt and Pakistan. He returned to the U.S. in 2008 and has since primarily focused on immigration and border issues. Moore has won top awards throughout his career, including the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Photography, World Press Photo honors, the Robert Capa Gold Medal from the Overseas Press Club, Photographer of the Year from Pictures of the Year International, the NPPA and Sony World Photography Organization. This March, powerHouse Books published his book Undocumented: Immigration and the Militarization of the United States-Mexico Border. This work represents ten years of Moore's photojournalism on the issues of immigration and border security. His comprehensive and nuanced approach puts a human face on all sides of one of the most hotly debated topics in America today. Moore is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, where he studied Radio-Television-Film. He lives with his family in Stamford, Connecticut.

Samuel Almeida, MSF regional advocacy manager is responsible for the implemetation and coordination of MSF's advocacy strategy in Mexico and Central America. The Mexico and Central America mission currently conducts activities in Mexico and Hondorus, working with survivors of violence (including sexual violence), migrants and asylum seekers, returnees, and IDPs. From August 2017 to June 2018, Samuel served as an MSF humanitarian affairs officer in Iraq. Prior to joining MSF, Samuel worked as a lawer in Sao Paulo, Brazil. From 2014-2015 he served as a researcher for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). He holds a Bachelor of Laws (LLB) from Faculdades Metropolitanas Unidas (FMU) in Sao Paulo, as well as a Master of Arts from Universidade de Lisboa and a Master of Letters (Mlitt) from University College Dublin. His academic research focuses on security sector reform and transitional justice in Brazil.

Jason Cone, MSF-USA executive director, has an extensive background in crisis management, advocacy, and communications. He assumed leadership of MSF-USA in 2015 following 11 years with the organization, the last six-and-a-half as communications director. In his former role, he oversaw emergency and advocacy communications campaigns on issues ranging from the West African Ebola outbreak and Haiti earthquake and cholera epidemic, to global childhood malnutrition and HIV/AIDS. He has also conducted risk assessments and context analyses in South Sudan and Myanmar for MSF's Medical Care under Fire project. He has published papers in foreign policy journals on subjects ranging from attacks against humanitarian aid workers to the limits of humanitarian aid in easing the suffering of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, and to the role of social media in humanitarian action. Jason speaks regularly on humanitarian issues, photo ethics, and crisis communications at international conferences. Jason joined MSF in 2004, after working as a writer for the Center for Reproductive Rights, an international women’s reproductive rights organization. Before joining the Center, he was a correspondent and editor at the Earth Times.

María López De León is the President, CEO and board member of the National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures (NALAC). In January 2013, President Obama appointed Ms. De León to serve on the National Council on the Arts. In 2012 and 2013, Ms. De León was named among the nation’s Fifty Most Powerful and Influential People in the Nonprofit Arts. Ms. De León has been with NALAC for twenty years and has served as President and CEO for three years and Executive Director for sixteen years. Under her leadership, NALAC developed and launched three grant programs, the NALAC Fund for the Arts (NFA), a grant program for Latino artists and organizations; the Transnational Cultural Remittances (TCR), a grant program for artists and organizations in the U.S., Mexico and Central America; the NALAC Diverse Arts Spaces program, a grant program that supports organizations that are part of the Ford Foundation’s Diverse Art Spaces to expand their Latino programming to diverse audiences and outreach to diverse communities. Ms. De León serves on the National Council on the Arts and on the boards of the First People’s Fund, the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies, the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda, the Performing Arts Alliance and the United States Department of Arts and Culture. She is an advisory council member of Women of Color in the Arts; Intuit Hispanic Advisory Council; Pixar Studios COCO Cultural Advisors and Kennedy Center Latino Advisory Council.

NOTE: Seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Please check in at least five minutes before the start of the panel in order to guarantee your reservation.