Saturday, December 5, 2009

12-year-old helps document migrants' plight

12-year-old helps document migrants' plight
By Greg Mellen, Staff Writer
Posted: 12/04/2009

LONG BEACH - Stephanie Maldonado doesn't look like your typical community activist.

For one thing, she's just 12 years old. But this spring and in the summer of 2008, the seventh-grader at Hill Middle School spent time with destitute migrant farming families in the Coachella Valley. And that experience awakened something within her. Maldonado is no stranger to hard times. She is the youngest of three children and her mother works two jobs: in a cafeteria and as a cook at a restaurant. Her father, she says, is "not in the picture." She lives on the 1400 block of Elm Street in the gritty heart of Central Long Beach. When the idea of helping poor children was first proposed to Maldonado, it didn't immediately register.

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Censored News is published by censored journalist Brenda Norrell. A journalist for 27 years, Brenda lived on the Navajo Nation for 18 years, writing for Navajo Times, AP, USA Today, Lakota Times and other American Indian publications. After being censored and then terminated by Indian Country Today in 2006, she began the Censored Blog to document the most censored issues. She currently serves as human rights editor for the U.N. OBSERVER & International Report at the Hague and contributor to Sri Lanka Guardian, Narco News and CounterPunch. She was cohost of the 5-month Longest Walk Talk Radio across America, with Earthcycles Producer Govinda Dalton in 2008:
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