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Updated: Jun 27, 2018

Grape pickers working a morning harvest in the short film ESFUERZO

"Honor the hands that harvest your crops." -Dolores Huerta

I grew up surrounded by strawberry fields. My father drove me to school early, every morning, and we would pass hundreds of field workers. My father always told me, “They work the hardest. Up before dawn, on their feet throughout the day through sunset. California would be nothing without them.”

My father’s words stayed with me. I’ve always had a deep respect for field workers. For the effort and sacrifice they make to put fruit and vegetables on our tables, to pick the grapes that make our wines.

Over the last few years, I've listened to the national conversation regarding immigration. I've watched the news. I feel that an essential piece of the story is missing. The VOICES of the immigrants.

The stories, the experiences, and the feelings of the men and women who sacrifice everything, who leave their families and homes behind to pick our fruits and vegetables - to pick the grapes that make our wines.

That is why I made this film. To give a voice to the people behind the vine.

-Alana Maiello, Director of Esfuerzo