Say their names: honoring the “deportees” Highway 99

photo by Lindajoy Fenley
The grave marker now has the names of all who perished in the crash.

by Lindajoy Fenley
posted May 31

In folk music circles, most people know Woody Guthrie’s song “Plane Crash at Los Gatos.”

But few ever visit Fresno’s Holy Cross Cemetery where a mass grave holds the remains of 28 farmworkers who died in the fiery 1948 plane crash that the song is about. read more

Connecting farmworkers to healthcare in California’s rural north Glenn & Butte counties included in effort

As a “promotora” for Ampla Health, Maria Soto is at the forefront of expanding Medi-Cal access across Glenn, Butte and other rural Northern California counties.

by Peter Schurmann, EMS
posted April 11

Leer en español aqui

HAMILTON CITY – It’s late February and the road to Hamilton City about 10 miles west of Chico is lined with blooming almond trees, their pink blossoms blanketing the fields for miles around. A single clinic stands in the center of town.

Inside the clinic we meet Maria Soto, whose work as a promotora is an essential piece in California’s ambitious plan to deliver healthcare to all residents regardless of immigration status. read more

University Farm director brings global perspective Orellana's priorities: water, technology, community engagement

by Ken Smith
posted April 5

Ricardo Orellana grew up against the backdrop of a 12-year civil war in his native El Salvador, but his childhood memories are thankfully dominated by more peaceful recollections — namely, of working with the cows at his grandmother’s farm outside the small town of Usulutá. read more

Debajito brings diverse mix of rhythms to Chico dance floors Popular band mixes Latin American musical styles with hip hop and more

by Ken Smith
posted Feb. 29

If not for some creative thinking on the part of its members, Chico’s Debajito could have been just another creative casualty of the COVID-19 crisis. An early incarnation of the group played just one show at Tender Loving Coffee before the virus – and accompanying shutdowns – struck our area. With the standard venues shuttered and indoor gatherings prohibited, the members of Debajito started their own pandemic-era scene. read more

At the Chico Cemetery, celebrating Día de los Muertos Families gather to honor a Latin American tradition

photo by Ulises Duenas
An altar at the Chico Cemetery.

by Ulises Duenas
essay posted Oct. 29

Death is universal and inevitable. It’s almost impossible to prevent a loved one’s death from being emotionally painful when it happens. But how a culture or family views death and the passing of a loved one is far from universal.

Día de los Muertos, or “Day of the Dead,” is a Mexican holiday that came from combining Aztec and Spanish traditions. The focus is on celebrating the lives of those we lost and using food and music to give them a good time before their souls return to rest. The holiday is all about associating death with feelings of joy and thankfulness rather than with reopening old wounds. read more

Health care providers struggle to reach essential workers As cold-season viruses spread, barriers to health care seem to grow

photo by Karen Laslo
Program Manager Norma Lacy

by Natalie Hanson
posted Jan. 11

The COVID pandemic continues to impact California’s farmworkers and their access to health care -– particularly in more isolated rural zones like the Northern Sacramento Valley, doctors say.

The “tripledemic” — as flu and RSV add to the surging respiratory illnesses sweeping the nation -– may worsen existing barriers to health care access that marginalized communities face. In Butte County, health providers say it is hard to know which communities have been hit hardest by the virus, but they believe it is harder to reach essential worker communities like California’s farmworkers. read more