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HOUSTON, TX – Where else to know how the pain of immigration feels but in the classroom.

“I always compare the immigration issue to when people have to go fix the streets, in the city, and they go just patch it up and then they go back later because the patching wasn’t enough so then they go back to a bigger hole,” said author and former school teacher, Marie Elena Cortes.  She wants help plug those holes.

Through her organization, ‘Kids Write to Know,’ Cortes holds writing and art workshops to empower and challenge kids to write positive messages that will inspire their communities.

“As I read the journals, I was like ‘wow’…I just didn’t even know this could even happen.  I didn’t even know our government was doing these separations…because these are kids who are born in the United States,” Cortes says.

Cortes’ latest book, ‘Neglected by Two Countries,’ is a collection of journals by some of her former students who shared their life’s experiences on immigration issues in the U.S.

She further adds, “I feel the kids are being neglected by the country where they’re born and by where the country where their parents come from.  Most of these kids were born in the United States and they tried to get help from the United States to re-unite or get answers, and our government has kind of been ignoring it for a while now.”