This documentary follows the migration of thousands of young Quebecers as they travel to British Columbia to harvest fruit in the lush Okanagan Valley. The camera follows several spirited youth into the orchards for seven weeks. As the rain sets in, reality unfolds: it's cold, the cherry crop is late, and money is short. But as they make friends and enjoy their independence, the promise of adventure is realized. Although their work is integral to the local economy, the youth find that the experience is not just about making money. It's about awareness, self-discovery and exploring the world.
Filmed at the Wing Fong Farm in Ontario, this documentary follows the tilling, planting and harvesting of Asian vegetables destined for Chinese markets and restaurants. On 80 acres of land, Lau King-Fai, her son and a half-dozen migrant Mexican workers care for the plants. For Yeung Kwan, her son, the farm represents personal and financial independence. For his mother, it is an oasis of peace. For the Mexican workers, it provides jobs that help support their children back home.
Here is a film showing how each spring, prairie farmers renew their gamble with wind, frost, drought, rust and hail to begin again the cycle that may bring a good, or a lean, year. This story of big-scale wheat farming is told by a farm woman whose sons represent the fourth generation to operate a Saskatchewan farm.
This documentary from Min Sook Lee (Tiger Spirit) follows a poverty-stricken father from Central Mexico, along with several of his countrymen, as they make their annual migration to southern Ontario to pick tomatoes. For 8 months a year, the town's population absorbs 4,000 migrant workers who toil under conditions, and for wages, that no local would accept. Yet despite a fear of repercussions, the workers voice their desire for dignity and respect.
This short documentary records the rural sights and sounds of the Chateauguay Valley of Quebec. The day of the big stationary threshing machine is almost over, as the machine is pushed into obscurity by the combine harvester. But there are still parts of Canada where crops are gathered in the old-fashioned way as the men work out in the fields and the women manage the kitchen. This film offers a rare and charming glimpse into mid-20th-century rural and family life in Canada.
This short documentary follows Alberta farmers Jack Sutherland and Ted Quaschnick as they travel with transport trucks and a crew down through the wheat-producing plains of the American mid-west all the way to Texas and back. During these years of machinery shortages, the American harvest could use all the help that’s available. Through picturesque shots of the golden prairies, this film captures a moment in time when new agricultural cultivation methods for greater yield and quality are being developed to sustain an ever-growing population.
Ages 16 to 17
Diversity - Diversity in Communities
Social Studies - Labour Studies
In an essay, have students explain how the young workers of Quebec grew personally through the experience of fruit harvesting. What are some of the hardships they faced and how would global warming affect their journey if it took place currently? Explain the counterculture movement in the 1960s where youth rebelled and returned to nature.