Members of Metro Vancouver's Mexican community gathered at a cafe in Surrey, B.C., to raise money and talk about their worries after a series of powerful earthquakes shook their home country in the past two weeks.

At Victoria's Mexican Bakery, a donation bin sits by the cash register to raise money for the victims of the earthquakes. 

On Saturday, all the sales at Victoria's were being collected to send to three towns in the state of Morelos, where bakery owner Victoria Deanda is originally from.

It was one of the hardest hit areas when the first earthquake struck on Sept. 8. 

"As soon as I saw the videos on social media, I recognized the streets, and I recognized the buildings," Deanda said. 

"It's pretty overwhelming to see that happening and not be able to be there to help and check on everyone you know."

Victoria Deanda

Victoria Deanda, the owner of Victoria's bakery in Surrey, B.C., bakes for a fundraiser she held on Saturday. (CBC)

It was her customers who urged her to do something to help.

Deanda decided all the money raised on Saturday will go towards medical help for the victims. 

The small cafe was packed  with families speaking a mix of English and Spanish while eating sweet, sticky buns. 

"We're here to support them, as Mexicans. We're here to support our country," said Gabriella McPherson. 


A family set up shelter in the middle of a street next to homes damaged by a 7.1 earthquake, in Morelos state, Mexico, on Wednesday. Many people are sleeping in the street to avoid aftershocks.

While working at Victoria's on Saturday afternoon, Sorroco Boyas says that when the first earthquake hit, she frantically tried to reach her family in Mexico. 

"I was thinking, I hope they're OK. And I start started calling and they don't have communication, and I try again and again," she said. 

Eventually Boyas found out everyone had survived — but many of their homes didn't.

"My sister's house is down. My brother's house, my neighbour across my father's house — all the houses are down." 

Bakery owner Deanda said she was hoping to raise up to $4,000.