DES MOINES, Iowa — Local non-profit, Proteus, Inc. is drawing our attention to farmworkers next week as it celebrates "Farmworker Awareness Week".
Proteus works to provide help for farmworkers such as affordable healthcare, education opportunities, and safety trainings for farmworkers across Iowa, Nebraska and Indiana.
As part of "Farmworker Awareness Week" from March 27-31, the group is collecting donated long sleeve shirts to pass out to farmworkers, which is essential during the hot summer months.
The CEO of Proteus, Daniel Zinnel, said they hope the week is a time for people to think about the crucial role farm workers have in our day to day lives.
"Often times they're working in the shadows, living in the shadows especially here in Iowa, where they're working sunrise to sunset, seven days a week and most Iowans don't even realize there are farmworkers living in their communities," said Zinnel.
In 2022, Zinnel said Proteus collected and distributed shirts out to thousands of farmers across Iowa. They also have an initiative throughout the year to collect donated Hydroflask water bottles for farmworkers because it's important for them to have cool drinking water on-hand throughout the work day.