LatinaLista — Juan Carlos Zaldivar has dived camera-first into the immigration debate producing a series of videos with a three-fold mission — put a human face to the issue, highlight the role of hunger in pushing immigrants to make the journey, and launch an online conversation about both issues.
Caminos originally premiered on PBS' online network, World Channel. The four 5-10 minute episodes were filmed along the "immigrant trail" and are online in their entirety. Each video module explores the root causes of migration from Mexico into the United States "as told by immigrants, their families and community leaders working to alleviate immigration, migration and food related issues."
The videos deal with four distinct segments of the larger issue of immigration:
Episode 1: NAFTA & Why People Are Leaving Mexico
This is a short video about the effects of NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement) on the local economies of towns across the United States and Mexico.
Episode 2: Food Sovereignty
This is a short video exploring the concept of Food Sovereignty, which claims for the democratization of the food system, where people (not corporations) decide how and what foods are needed and grown.
Episode 3: Why are food cooperatives important?
This is a short video highlighting how farmer cooperatives can help small farmers to weather the financial storm created by free trade agreement that favor the global market over local economies and highlighting how cooperatives can circumvent the limitations of government subsidies that small farmers would otherwise not be eligible for.
Episode 4: Why are migrant worker centers important?
This is a short video highlighting how migrant worker centers can help the living standards of migrant workers while also serving local communities across the United States by protecting local markets that depend on the migrant worker labor force.
Because the series is supposed to be used as a learning tool, Zaldivar and his team have also created a study guide for teachers and organizations that can be used alongside viewing the videos.
The hope is people will learn why these immigrants are bypassing traditional channels to risk their lives to find the work they so desperately need to help them and their families survive.