Images from both sides of the Mexico and U.S. Borders.
This is a sign in the Mexican city of Tijuana that marks the actual border between Mexico and the United States.
Here's a border crossing between Mexico and the United States. Coming into Mexico, you simply go through a turnstile-- there's no one to check your passport and no customs checks at all. Basically, anyone can go to Mexico. But not everyone can come to the United States-- it takes seconds to go to Mexico and up to several hours to cross back to the United States.
This is Casa del Migrante, a safe house for migrants in Tijuana, Mexico that's run by a church. Tijuana, a city just south of San Diego, Calif., is a magnet for people trying to enter the United States. Most of the people staying here use Casa del Migrante as a brief resting place before attempting to make the often-dangerous border crossing.
Most of the people we saw working just outside of the Mexican village of Cheran make their small wages as furniture makers, vendors, or farming. Here, a group of workers make their way to the fields.
This is the village of Cheran, Mexico, which has a population of about 30,000 people. Nearly every person we spoke to in this town had at least one family member working in the States-- usually illegally-- and sending money back to the village. Money sent from relatives in the United States is the third largest source of income in Mexico. The woman holding the camera is Channel One producer Sherri Brown.
In Cheran, most people we talked to made less than 50 dollars a week by making things and selling them on the street, like this woman working as a street vendor. Many of the Mexicans who want to work in the United States say that just a year's work in the States can allow them to live comfortably in Mexico for several years.
Young people are hard to find in Cheran, as many of them leave as soon as they can to find work in the United States. We met this young man who'd just returned to the village from the United States with his family. He admitted he missed his old hometown.
This tortilla vendor is one of the more successful businesses in town. Channel One producer Alex Castro makes a purchase for the road. We ate all those tortillas during the two-hour drive back to our hotel.
During our day in Cheran, we noticed there were very few people in the streets. We soon found out there was a wedding that was attended by nearly the entire village. They soon invited us to join them in the festivities.
Not all the homes in the village look like these. The locals told us that you can tell which households has family members working in the United States by the homes they live in. They tend to have two-story homes and satellite dishes, like the ones along this street.