Ventura County – House Farm Workers! has selected the recipients of its 6th annual Ellen Brokaw House Farm Workers! Scholarship for college-bound and current college students. Litzy Hernandez, Jesus Martinez, and Bryan Rodriguez will each be awarded $3,000 towards their continued education and will be celebrated virtually, at House Farm Workers! annual “From Field to Fork” fundraising event on July 15th. To purchase tickets, please visit www.housefarmworkers.org/event.
Previously a 2017 scholarship winner, Litzy Hernandez is an aspiring trauma-informed immigration attorney who is currently attending UC Berkeley as a graduate pre-law student. Motivated by continuous accounts of witnessing and experiencing worker exploitation challenges and racial discrimination towards native migrants, Hernandez shares her career goals, “I hope to work alongside a non-profit organization to provide free and/or low-cost legal services to the indigenous migrant community in Ventura County.”
Jesus Martinez is currently a freshman in UC Berkeley’s architectural program, intending to become a fully certified architect. Martinez’s work ethic and integrity have made him incredibly disciplined. During the pandemic, Martinez supported his family by taking on labor work, in addition to holding two work-study jobs, being an active participant in student programs, and completing full-time university coursework.
Bryan Rodriguez is a current student at Ventura College and a resident of CEDC housing development. Rodriguez is an active member of Ventura College’s Political Science Club and Movimiento Estudiantil Chicanx Dé Aztlan Club. He plans to transfer to a UC or Ivy League institution to pursue his degree in political science in the future.
“We are honored and excited to celebrate the achievements of these three hard-working, disciplined, and courageous students,” said scholarship namesake, prominent agricultural community member and founder of House Farm Workers!, Ellen Brokaw. “Each student’s personal journey through living in unstable conditions and experiencing housing inequity while persevering as phenomenal academics is truly compelling. They, and so many other children of farmworkers in our community, are our future leaders and we are humbled to be able to support their bright futures with these scholarships.”
About the Organization – Since 2004, House Farm Workers! has been promoting safe, decent, secure and affordable housing for farm workers and their families in Ventura County through education and advocacy. The nonprofit 501c3 actively and continually advocates for the agricultural community to elected representatives and community leaders about the need for safe, decent and affordable housing for Ventura County farm workers and their families. There are approximately 41,600 employed farmers in the county, all of whom hold key roles in Ventura County’s $2 billion-a-year agricultural industry. The average farm worker’s annual income is