"I''m writing a letter to the Three Wise Men. I want a doll, a castle, a dresser, but more than that is my mother Mayra to return so she can be with all her children," says a minor of approximately four years.

"I''m going to ask her for a beauty set, a bike, and my mother who has been missing for one year," says another of Mayra''s daughters.

The non for profit A Tu Encuentro Colectivo Gto and Sembrando en Común launched the "Sow smiles" campaign. The objective is to collect toys for boys and girls who have lost one or both of their parents, says Marcela Villalobos, president of Amnesty International Mexico and activist.

"The children''s life is no longer the same"

The campaign "sow smiles give away a toy" seeks more than the toy''s donation; it looks for empathy from society. "In addition to toys, we want people to consciously realize that when a relative disappears, the children are destroyed, and their lives will no longer be the same," says Bibiana Mendoza, a member of the group A Tu Encuentro Colectivo Gto.

"Society should not believe the discourse that people go missing because they did "something." We want to break with the premise that if you do something wrong, you deserve to disappear. When this happens, there are laws, and you are punished by going to jail. We know stories of missing people who were not in the wrong steps, "says Bibiana.

Organized crime has orphaned more than 30,000 children, the Study of Girls, Boys, and Adolescents Victims of Organized Crime in Mexico, prepared by the National Human Rights Commission (CNDH) revealed.

Marcela and Bibiana agree that the grandmothers are usually the ones left in charge of the minors, older women with little to zero income. Therefore, they decided to create this campaign and show what the victims of missing relatives experience. "In these cases, we cannot talk about nuclear families. The children stay with an uncle, aunt or usually with their grandmothers," says Bibiana.

"I want my dad and a bike"

"My name is Juan Carlos. I want my father to return because I miss him and a bike," says another child.

"The families of missing victims never imagined they had to form a group so that authorities would pay attention to them," says Marcela.

The Encuentro collective began with five families. A year later, more than 200 joined. "Violence in Guanajuato has increased in the last three years, and we do not stop seeing simulations by the authorities in trying to search for the missing, " points out Marcela.

The campaign sought to collect the toys that the children asked for in their letters. The only thing they didn''t get was bikes. Bibiana says the fundraiser was organized with little time. However, she hopes that for next year, they will accomplish more. "We are already suffering too much; why not receive a gift this January 6," says Bibiana.

Traducción: Valentina K. Yanes