Janet Rivera, 2022 SAF intern
Most days this summer were filled with me doing work virtually, whether looking for farmworkers’ resources or preparing for my next outreach visit. Still, on the occasions that I did theatre or outreach, it was always a memorable experience. In some ways, I felt connected to the farmworkers as if they were familiar to me, a sense that, in some ways, they remind me of my parents. All of these farmworkers work hard to provide for themselves and their families. But while they may be exhausted in the afternoons after working in the fields, it doesn’t stop them from smiling and joking with all of us. Their joy is radiant, and they are interested in what we are doing there at their camp.
While I interview them, they stop to ask me my name and ask me questions about what I am working on. I tell them about my work with Enlace Latino and afterward, I thank them for their responses. I enjoy talking to the farmworkers because they share their experiences and I become more aware of their lives and the things they may need. The life of a farmworker is not easy, with exhaustive labor and irregular hours. Still, their perseverance to continue moving forward is admirable, and there is courage in how they continue to do this needed work while being away from their loved ones. Seeing this firsthand, I hope to continue doing this line of work to advocate for farmworkers’ rights and resources throughout North Carolina even after I finish the Into the Fields program.