Muchas Gracias Macias
After 30 plus years of work within the community of Lindsay, the Chamber of Commerce decided it was time to honor Elena Macias with its President’s Award.
This prestigious award is given to the volunteer of the year, someone who has gone over and above the duty of an average citizen. Elena’s work in the migrant community of Lindsay is the definition of dedication to a town and its people.
Elena has lived in Lindsay nearly her entire life (48 ½ years to be exact). She attended Lindsay schools, sent both of her children to Lindsay schools, her eldest daughter is now a preschool teacher at Washington Elementary and Elena herself has been working for Lindsay Unified School District for 30 years. It’s safe to say that Lindsay pride runs deep in the Macias’ family.
Eighteen of the 30 years Elena spent with the district has been dedicated to working for The Migrant Education Program. The Migrant Education program was created in 1966 to assist children of migrant families in education and health. The program was based on the belief that migrant children required additional attention in order to thrive in school. Through her work with the program she has helped recruit families, assist families with food donations, and ensure each child has their medical and educational needs meet. Ever since witnessing devastating the poverty of the migrant camps she has worked tirelessly to ensure families are able provide for their children.
“I’ve been into homes that are just converted barns where families have to use orange crates as tables and beds.”
Elena recounts the first time she got home after visiting the migrant camps.
“I made my daughter clean out her closet. I was shocked at the poor living conditions.”
Elena has dedicated herself to be an advocate for the community. During Christmas she helped to raise money to deliver Christmas basket to migrant families. Each year instead of receiving gifts Elena asks that family and friends donate to the program in order to help those in need.
Not only does Elena work at Lindsay Unified she also has a part time job cutting hair at Mercy’s Precision Cuts in Lindsay. Her work at Mercy’s allows her to connect with the community. Elena has been known to recruit her clientele to help families in need,
“The people of Lindsay don’t have much, but if they know a person is in need they give whatever they can.”
When asked about her feelings on winning the President Award Elena had this to say, “I feel honored to have received this award, but I feel even more honored having been able to help the people of Lindsay for all of these years.”
If Elena has inspired you to help a family in need you can make a tax free donation today at: www.lindsay.k12.ca.us/District/Department/55-Healthy-Start/1220-Healthy-Start-Forms.html.
By Sheyanne Romero