Immigrant Life

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March Marks Anniversary of Police Shooting

Neighbors, friends, and advocates for the family of Amilcar Perez Lopez marked the anniversary of his shooting by San Francisco police officers on Friday with a march from Folsom and 24th streets to Mission Police Station. “We’re not going to stop until we have justice for Amilcar,” said pastor Michael McBride at a memorial before the march. “My tradition says that...
Staff photo of Belinda Reyes

Starting Over: The Realities of Immigration

This story was produced by KALW. Belinda Reyes, director of the Cesar E. Chavez Institute at San Francisco State University, discusses the changing Mission and some of the difficulties that Latino immigrants may face when it comes to resettling in the U.S. Belinda Reyes: The southern border of Mexico is very rough. It’s a very difficult experience. They aren’t doing it...
Photo by Eva Royale

Starting Over: The After Effects of Migration

This story was produced by KALW. Concepción Caballero Antonio is sitting at a table at the Mission Neighborhood Health Center, listening to one of her compañeras sing. “Zapote, orange, pink,” she says, pointing out the bright tissue paper she’s using to make flower decorations. Today she’s with a group of about ten other men and women. They come every Wednesday...
Still from "Azul y no tan rosa" trailer.

Eliana Lopez Launches Latino Film and Theater Series

The “Sheriff’s Wife” is back: Eliana Lopez, wife of former San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi, is returning her play What is the Scandal as part of a new Spanish language film and theater project with her two siblings, Alfonso Lopez and Carolina Agudelo Lopez. The family trio, having formed a company called 3Lopez Productions, intends to bring theatrical and cinematic material...
Claudia Martinez in her apartment in San Francisco. Photo by Leila Day

Starting Over: Resettling in the U.S.

This story was produced by KALW. Concepción Caballero Antonio is chopping squash in the kitchen of Los Yaquis Salvadorian and Mexican Restaurant. The massive knife she’s using is about the same size as her arm. She’s very small, and grins a lot. Concepción’s happy about her job as a cook and dishwasher here. She proudly points out the fish she’ll...
Valencia & Kebab storefront

Hayes Valley Kebab Makers Move to SF Mission

Hayes & Kebab, a Hayes Valley restaurant demolished to make way for new construction, has resurfaced in the Mission as Valencia & Kebabs at 525 Valencia St.. It is taking over the former location of the Indian restaurant Gajalee. “It’s how we cook food in Kurdistan,” explained Emin Tekin, who along with his brother Bawer co-owns the restaurant as well...
DIstrict 9 Supervisor David Campos stands with the family of Rosario Anaya on January 27, 2016 at City Hall. The education activist died in August, and was honored at the NEN Awards. Photo by Laura Waxmann

Mission Educator Honored with Posthumous Award

Rosario Anaya, the former executive director of the Mission Language and Vocational School at 2929 19th Street, was honored on Wednesday night with an induction into the Neighborhood Empowerment Network Hall of Fame,  an organization that supports residents, organizations, and government agencies in building resilient communities. Anaya died of lung cancer on August 5, 2015 at age 70, and had worked at the vocational...
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Activists Protesting Deportations Arrested in SF

In an effort to draw attention to the deportation of immigrants fleeing violence, in particular those from Central America, protesters blocked the intersections of Sansome Street with Washington and Jackson streets today. 16 protesters were arrested and later released. For several hours, protesters marched in circles around clusters of chained activists sitting in the intersections, situated in front of the San Francisco branch of...
Photo by Claudia Escobar

Memory of Musician, Poet and Healer Mamacoatl to be Honored at Brava Theater

Silvia “Mamacoatl” Parra tried to heal the world with her music, art, spiritual work and activism. Over the span of several years in the Mission, Parra touched countless lives and pushed back against global injustices with art and community collaboration. On December 13, 2015, Parra died in Mexico of stomach cancer. She will be honored tomorrow at a memorial and...
Stencil collage by Bay Area artist Kate Deciccio. Photo by Laura Waxmann

Mexican & American Artists in New SF Exhibit

In an artistic collaboration that crosses individual and national boundaries, 55 artists will be showcasing their politically-fueled work in an effort to address struggles shared on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border. “Mexicanos al Grito de Guerra: We didn’t cross the border, the borders crossed us,” opens at the Mission Cultural Center on January 16 for one month, but the exhibit’s organizers hope that the messages conveyed in featured...
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Nearly Evicted, SF Family Buys Affordable Home

Once on the brink of eviction from a below-market-rate rental that had been their home for 11 years, Brenda and Luis Palacios and their three children were finally able to purchase their home at the Tiffany Gardens apartment complex in La Lengua. An exceptionally complicated situation involving a city agency, a nonprofit, and a homeowner’s association was resolved because the sale, as it...
Father Richard Smith stands in the courtyard of Episcopal Church of St. John the Evangelist, at 1661 15th St. Photo By Laura Waxmann

SF Mission Vicar Practices Humanity From Pulpit to City Hall

Dressed in a black robe and a clergy collar, Father Richard Smith often stands in contrast to the people for whom he rallies, quietly but with all of his heart. He says some of his most important work happens outside the church, going to the places where members of his community are forgotten. “Jesus got in trouble because he was always hanging out with the...
Lena Mouton-Lugo and her family buy ingredients for their Christmas dinner at La Palma, located on 2884 24th St. Photo By Laura Waxmann

SF Mission Residents Share Christmas Memories, Traditions

As rain streams off the window of her Mission Street apartment, Jana Dlabikova patiently stirs a pot of sauerkraut soup simmering on her stove. “Back home, we always eat this soup on Christmas,” said Dlabikova, who is an immigrant from Slovakia. A pungent aroma fills the kitchen as she recounts her personal Central European Christmas story. December 24, or Christmas...
immigration protest rally

SF Rejects Immigration Enforcement

San Francisco supervisors unanimously adopted a non-binding policy Tuesday refusing to cooperate with a federal program that collects immigration details about suspects that makes it easier to deport undocumented immigrants. Supervisor John Avalos said that if local communities saw a link between law enforcement and immigration enforcement, “it would completely undermine… the trust we are trying to build within our city.” Immigrant advocates have...
Luis Aranda, at his home in Richmond, Calif. Photo by Noah Arroyo.

In a Real Estate Boom, SF’s Mexican Musician Still Sings of the ‘Bittersweet’

This is one of a series of profiles on the musicians who make up the Mission District. The first profile, on the Mission “Blues Man,” can be read here.  On a recent day in Richmond, California, Luis Aranda greeted me at his door, dressed to kill. He wore a cowboy hat and boots, a black suit with snake-skin accents on...