Rio Grande Valley Border Community Liaison is Building a Strong Community Relationship
EDINBURG, Texas — The U.S. Border Patrol’s Rio Grande Sector (RGV) Border Community Liaison (BCL) program streamlines communication between the public and the sector’s Chief Patrol Agent by engaging with our community. Outreach is aligned under the BCL program, and includes: the Explorers; Operation Detour; Head of the Class & Youth of the Year Scholarship; school and career day presentations; Citizens’ Academies and much more. Agents within the BCL program and Strategic Communications also facilitate tours of visiting congressional delegations and high ranking dignitaries, as well as participate in meetings with landowners and other stakeholders.
Below are some of the highlights for 2018 events:
- “Head of the Class” recognized 69 students for their efforts, in and out of the classroom, during the 2017/2018 school year. Three of the students were selected as “Youth of the Year,” receiving a $1,750 scholarship made possible by the generosity of HEB, IBC, Noble Texas Builders, and the Region One Education Service Center.
- RGV Sector’s employees generously raised 159,684 pounds of food during the 2018 “Feds Feed Families” food drive, which directly benefits needy families in the local area.
- Agents conducted close to 200 “Red Ribbon Week” and “Just Say No” to drugs presentations, influencing the lives of 68,448 students.
- BCL agents continued to make a direct impact with the local youth via the Border Patrol Explorer program with 60 events held, directly affecting 4,694 students.
- 95 “Operation Detour” presentations were led by station agents to more than 20,000 students in hopes of steering youth away from illegal activity that plagues border communities.
- RGV Sector continues to support Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) through its annual Chili Cook Off – In 2017, despite the snow and cold weather, the sector raised one thousand dollars for a local charity. This year, the Chili Cook Off, scheduled for Friday December 21, 2018, will host over 15 teams from different agencies across the Rio Grande Valley.
- High profile visits to the sector included welcoming national and foreign delegates such as Vice President Mike Pence, First Lady Melania Trump, the first ladies of Honduras and Guatemala, Secretaries Jim Mattis and Kirstjen Nielsen. Each visit provides a better understanding of the humanitarian and border security mission.
“We understand the vital need to build and maintain a strong, collaborative relationship with the community we serve, including segments of the community that have remained disconnected from our agency. During 2018, we worked diligently to forge this bond through various platforms and robust community outreach and engagement programs such as Career Days, Stakeholder meetings, Citizens Academies and Operation Detour presentations,” said Acting Chief Patrol Agent Raul Ortiz.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between official ports of entry. CBP is charged with securing the borders of the United States while enforcing hundreds of laws and facilitating lawful trade and travel.