ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A local nonprofit is tired of repeated break-ins. The organization provides aid and tutoring to refugees but said they’ve had to temporarily shut down services due to the crime.
“I am not going to be coming here. I won’t bring any people here,” said Program Director Nkazi Sinandile.
Nkazi Sinandile is the program director of the nonprofits Immigrant and Refugee Resource Village of Albuquerque and New Mexico Women’s Global Pathways.
The center has resources including guiding refugees with housing issues and providing children with tutoring.
Sinandile runs the program with her husband. They said they had a break-in in November and were hit again in January. Sinandile said the multiple incidents have left her feeling discouraged and helpless.
“When this happens all of a sudden, I feel like I don’t even want to pick up or even tell anyone to come here. I’m scared to death,” said Nkazi Sinandile.
In their most recent break-in, the burglar cut through a fence in the backyard.
“He turned off the power, and the cameras would not work and then he turned off the power in the other in the other building too,” said Program Manager Lungile Sinandile.
The unknown man then tried to pry open the backdoor but failed. The Sinandiles say the recent break-ins have scared the people they serve.
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The program has stopped providing services at the center and instead goes to the people’s homes. Although they’re scared, they said helping the refugees is their number one priority.
“Leaving is not a priority because we know that the people are refugees, immigrants, and asylum seekers. You know they were in rough very, very, rough places, and so the only thing we want to make sure is that they are safe when they are here,” said Nkazi Sinandile.
The nonprofit said there’s no set date on when they will return to the center. They’ve set up a GoFundMe in order to make repairs to the center and improve security.
The nonprofit also stated they met with Albuquerque Police, who said they will increase patrols in the area.