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TEDxFruitvale - Maria Catalan - From Farmworker to Farm Owner

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Uploaded on Oct 19, 2011

A third-generation migrant farmworker, Maria Catalan was born in Guerrero, Mexico, where she helped her parents on the family farm before immigrating to the United States in 1986. For many years she worked for California's biggest farms, picking broccoli and carrots. Then she enrolled in a program at the Rural Development Center in Salinas Valley that provides agricultural training to Spanish-speaking immigrants with limited means, and later was able to begin farming under the auspices of the nonprofit Agriculture and Land-Based Training Association. Maria and her family now cultivate 14 acres in Hollister, CA, and sell at 13 farmers' markets as well as to high-end restaurants in the San Francisco Bay Area. She has volunteered with Lideres Campesinas, an organization for farmworker women, and has set up farm stands at the USDA WIC offices in Salinas and at schools. Maria was honored with a Certificate of Appreciation from the USDA, an award usually reserved for organizations, not individuals.

This talk is part of Session One: Meet for TEDxFruitvale, which was held on October 14, 2011 at Mills College in Oakland, CA. The conference's theme was Harvesting Change, and it focused on farmworkers, labor and other social justice movements, and fair labor practices in business. http://www.tedxfruitvale.org/

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In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)

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