Esmeralda awakes to another day of harvesting broccoli. She sets out the items her daughters will need, leaves a note for her mother, and then catches a bus crowded with other northbound workers headed to the Somerton border crossing.
To you, tomatoes may simply add color to your plate, but to Amador Castellanos and his vanpool group, tomatoes are what get them up in the morning.
On May 10th we received an email from vanpool 372 it reads “[as we were heading] to Coalinga State Hospital and at or about 7:30 this morning, just as we passed Stratford and turned left onto the CA-41 the van driver noticed a car accident on her side window
Norma Sanchez has been part of a vanpool for 11 years, 9 of them as a volunteer driver. Before ever joining a vanpool Norma like many of us would commute in a single passenger car.
At the beginning of his career, Fabian Cruz’s main focus has been the strawberry harvest. It’s been a part of his life. For 30 years Fabian Cruz has been working in agriculture. Recently, he and the company he works for have switched focus to blackberries.
For over 12 years, Daniel Aviña has been working for the same company – working different jobs and making his way up the ladder.
Many people envision visiting Southern California as part of their vacation destination. The beaches, the food, the museums and the malls make it a great place to visit. However, for those like Ruben Salazar, who find themselves exhausted after spending all day working in the sun, it’s difficult for them to enjoy the attractions that Southern California has to offer.
Fernando’s cheerful nature adds a little sweetness to any day. He shares this and other traits with the strawberries he harvests. Did you know the strawberry isn’t a berry?
Jose sips his coffee and waits in the darkness of early morning for the arrival of his coworkers. The gas station in Calexico, California near the border crossing from Mexico is far from his home in the Salinas Valley, but maintaining year-round employment depends on relocating when the harvest ends further north.
Ignacio Torres left King City at 3:30 a.m. as usual. The 8o-mile commute had become routine, and Torres had no reason to expect today’s drive would be different from any other. He picked up his fellow CalVans passengers, who settled in for the winding 90-minute drive along Highway 198 between the Salinas and San Joaquin Valleys.