Valley students celebrate Cesar Chavez Day

MADERA, Calif. (KFSN) -- Throughout the Valley, celebrations honoring labor leader Cesar Chavez took place Friday.

Students at Cesar Chavez Elementary spent the day honoring their school's namesake. For an 11th year, more than 800 students gathered outside to pay tribute to the labor leader and civil rights activist.

"Cesar Chavez is a great farmworker leader," student Daniel Olivas said.

"He helped migrant farmworkers get better wages," student Karlo Zuniga said.

Zuniga says the co-founder of the National Farmworkers Association inspires him to do great things now and into the future.

"He has courage, and he's brave," he said. "He's not afraid of doing anything. He's strong, and he fights for the people."

"It's important we honor the culture and history of this community," principal Stephanie McPherson said. "Many of our students' families are farm laborers, and they are benefiting from the work that Cesar Chavez did."

The lesson these students took home covered a lot more than the United Farmworkers Movement.

"He served his community, so our students have been asked to also go out and serve their community," McPherson said.

McPherson says in addition to school service projects, each student has a service log at home to encourage community engagement and impact.

"We want students to appreciate what people have done in the past," she said. "We want them also to know that they can do things like that as well that they have the power to make life better."
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