Named for the Catholic patron saint of soldiers, the city of San Elizario lies on the banks of the Rio Grande in far western Texas, directly on the Mexican border. It’s an old town — first visited in 1598 by Spanish explorers, and permanently settled since 1789. The town changed hands often throughout its history — first belonging to colonial Spain, then Mexico, and finally an American town in 1848.
Its border town status shows in the town’s demographics. Roughly 35% of residents are foreign born, and over 98% identify as Latino. San Elizario experiences poverty at a startling rate:
- 35% of all residents live below the federal poverty line
- the average household earns $36,203 before taxes
- only 11% of residents over the age of 25 have a college degree
Our community partner organization in San Elizario is Familias Triunfadoras, Inc. a women-led nonprofit founded in 2006 by a group of local community activists aiming to improve quality of life along the US/Texas border. Their mission is to empower women and families in this underserved region through programs emphasizing family strengthening, community unity, asset building, community development and economic self-sufficiency.
PO Box 1352
San Elizario, TX 79849