Apt words by Cesar Chavez that are particularly relevant in our current political climate. Chavez had a remarkable skill for bringing communities to the table, for effectively engaging across unspoken lines, and for demonstrating how the courage of one can unfurl the courage of many. His legacy serves as beacon for those who seek to bring about compassionate change. His achievements toward social justice are an excellent example of how vital each and every voice is.
Chavez was born on March 31 in 1927. He was raised by his parents who instilled in him the importance of hard work, education, and respect. One of the most important lessons his parents taught him was the importance of helping others. Chavez and his family often helped his uncles, aunts, and cousins by giving them food when they had little to eat. This did not change when his family’s home was taken away and they moved to California as migrant workers, moving from farm to farm seeking work.
Despite tough times, they never forgot the importance of helping others. Chavez’s mother would often tell he and his brother to find homeless and hungry men so she could cook them a meal. The kindness and respect his family showed towards others stuck with Chavez.
In 1952 Chavez became an organizer for the Community Service Organization helping win rights for Mexican Americans by urging them to vote. After helping many Mexican Americans gain the respect of community leaders and win rights Chavez turned his sights on helping farm workers gain the respect and dignity they deserved. He started the National Farm Workers Association with Dolores Huerta to help improve the working conditions of farm workers. Steadfast in his belief of non-violence Chavez drew many people to his movement and it became the first successful farm workers’ union in the U.S winning farm workers the respect they deserved.
Are you inspired by the legacy of Chavez? Then take action this month!