2015 Report


“Farmworkers are an integral part of our food system, but they are not acknowledged or recognized by the general public. If people really knew what happens on our farms, then maybe companies and politicians would deal with farmworkers and farmers in a more fair and equitable manner. This is a discussion that needs to continue throughout the year, and having National Farmworker Awareness Week is a good way to start.”

- Chris Bouton, RAFI-USA

Farmworkers deserve to be recognized and celebrated for their work. For this reason SAF has been coordinating National Farmworker Awareness Week for the past 16 years. We would like to thank our 45 official partners and the many community members and students across the U.S. and Canada who coordinated events and actions to educate the larger public on the issues farmworkers face everyday.


Throughout this week of action, over 180 events were held with more than 10,300 people attending. We also used Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and other social media sites to reach over 279,636 allies during the week of awareness!
A wide range of events took place across the nation in support of farmworkers, including: film screenings, César Chávez blood drives, live music and dances, dinner celebrations, soccer tournaments, days of service, panel discussions, fundraisers, information tables, key note speakers, long-sleeve shirt drives, marches, Wendy’s actions, concerts, news articles and blog posts, petitions, photo exhibitions, worker memorials, pilgrimages, and presentations.

The 2015 daily messages highlighted reflections written by SAF’s Into the Fields interns who work with farmworkers in the Southeast each summer. In their writings for the SAF blog, students shared images and stories of their outreach, organizing, and advocacy work, and of their hopes for change. The images and messages represent the many different struggles farmworkers face, one for each day of awareness. The themes were living conditions, pesticides and health, education, community, living wages, rights, solidarity, and family.

As consumers, we enjoy the fruits of the labor of farmworkers and it’s our social responsibility to advocate for a fair agricultural system, spread awareness, and honor the legacy of César Chávez!

NFAW Highlights

  • We had the pleasure to collaborate with Picture Motion to promote the new Food Chains film. The film was an amazing way for people to learn about current farmworker struggles and how allies can be part of the movement. There were more than 60 film screenings across the country with 40 to 100 attendees at each event.
  • At the concert and parade of the Coalition of Immokalee Workers in Florida, the Student Farmworker Alliance declared a national student boycott of the fast food restaurant Wendy’s over farmworker concerns. This is a great action step that will show Wendy’s the importance of consumer power and how crucial it is for them to also care about working conditions and join the Fair Food Program.
  • The nation-wide long-sleeved shirt drive coordinated by the Association of Farmworker Opportunity Programs surpassed last year’s numbers and collected over 7,504 long sleeve shirts! This is a great contribution, which will help to protect workers from pesticide exposure, heat related illnesses, and skin cancer.
  • Racemates, a band made up of Duke University students, coordinated a concert on Duke campus and educated the audience on the conditions of farmworkers in NC.
  • YAYA-National Farm Worker Ministry coordinated their annual soccer game with a farmworker organization in DeLeon Springs, Florida.

Online Actions

  • There were news articles highlighting the different actions and events and others educating the readers about where their food comes from. Using the hashtags #NFAW2015, #FarmworkersFeedTheWorld, and #GotFoodThankAFarmworker we reached more than 279,636 people through social media who liked and shared the posts.
  • Many farmworker organizations collaborated to gather signatures for a petition to the EPA urging them to finally update the Worker Protection Standard protecting farmworkers from pesticides. Farmworker Justice delivered a petition with over 21,000 signatures! We hope EPA will make the right changes to protect the men, women and children who hand pick our food.
  • Congratulations to our Instagram Challenge winner Christina Vazquez for posting photos to illustrate each daily message during the week of action! #NFAW2015

WE CELEBRATE NATIONAL FARMWORKER AWARENESS WEEK BECAUSE...
“Farmworkers are an integral part of our food system, but they are not acknowledged or recognized by the general public. If people really knew what happens on our farms, then maybe companies and politicians would deal with farmworkers and farmers in a more fair and equitable manner. This is a discussion that needs to continue throughout the year, and having National Farmworker Awareness Week is a good way to start.” - Chris Bouton, RAFI-USA

“Farmworkers sustain us physically and economically. Their labor is intensive and of the most important in the world. Nothing connects us the way food does.” - Natali Rodriguez, Student Farmworker Alliance

“To commemorate all of what they experience to make our lives better, and to be conscious of how we are getting our food so that we are able to change how farmworkers are treated.” - Danewrys Marmolejos, Guilford College

“Everyone is created equal and farmworkers do so much in order to supply our basic needs but are often not recognized or noticed. This week gives farmworkers just a small bit of the appreciation that they deserve.” - Corban Sandoe, Emory University

Click here to read the full report.