Wednesday, May 8, 2013
On Monday, April 29th, some 35 occupational health professionals from the American College of Occupational and Environmental Health who were in Orlando attending a conference traveled from their hotel near the convention center to the Apopka area to experience a Lake Apopka Toxic Tour.
With former farmworker and quilt maker Linda Lee accompanying the tour and talking about her personal experiences, the group visited the former farm lands, passed the Zellwood Superfund site, saw a small labor camp, and stood on the shores of Lake Apopka at Magnolia Park.
The tour included the landfill, medical waste incinerator and sewage treatment plant that are all located in the community of South Apopka. The last stop on the tour was the FWAF Apopka office, where the tour group heard the personal stories from Maria and Yesica - current and former nursery workers who talked about their experiences of working around and being exposed to pesticides and the symptoms that they experienced. The group also heard from a representative from the Apopka family health clinic about the history of the clinic and the services they provide to the community.
Later that afternoon, back at the conference hotel, a follow up event, that was open to the media, was held which continued and broadened the discussion and explored future avenues of collaboration and communication to try to solve some of the occupational health problems facing today's farmworkers.
Tuesday, May 7, 2013
The Quilts will be on display with a selection of the photographs from The Last Harvest at The African American Museum of Art in Deland from May 11-June 29, 2013!
The museum houses a revolving gallery where visitors will find works of both established and emerging artists.
The museum is also the home to a permanent collection of more than 150 artifacts, including sculptures and masks from countries of Africa.
In addition to the visual arts, the museum founded the Little Theater of DeLand in 1999 to afford children and adults an opportunity to develop their dramatic abilities.
Wednesday - Saturday 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Wednesday - Saturday 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
325 South Clara Avenue DeLand, Florida (386) 736-4004
Wednesday, April 17, 2013
An Immersion Experience for Rollins College Students!
A very special group of Rollins College students in Central Florida spent their weekend in a immersion experience to learn more about the ethnically diverse, low-income community just 10 miles north of their college campus and to learn more about the realities for farmworkers living and working in this community.
In the hot Florida sun, they spent Saturday morning April 6th in the vegetable fields near Lake Apopka, pulling weeds alongside the farmworkers who were working the land that weekend. Trying to keep pace with the workers gave the students a taste of what it must be like to do this back-breaking work all day everyday, instead of just for the four hours that they spent in the fields that day.
After a brief and hurried lunch and a bit of relief in the air-conditioned Rollins JUMP bus, the students came to the office of the Farmworker Association of Florida to begin the Lake Apopka Toxic Tour. The tour took them back to the fields that they had just worked in earlier in the day, but with a new perspective - that of the unseen dangers related to pesticide contamination and the hazardous living and working conditions for farmworkers.
Later, along the tour, the group stopped at Magnolia Park in Apopka, where they sat together in a circle and posed deep and probing questions that lead to both an engaging discussion and new and greater insights into issues of social and environmental justice.
A little tired and a bit wiser, all returned to the FWAF office in Apopka for a few shared insights and a fun group photo. Toxic tours are intense experiences that leave participants with new questions and a new way of seeing the world of farmworkers and the food that they produce for us to eat.