Immokalee's Fields of Hope
is a story of Mexican, Haitian, and Guatemalan immigrants told by a businesswoman who regained her soul through volunteering with children. With compassion and understanding, Carlene Thissen shares the personal stories the immigrants told her, framed with the political and social histories of their countries.
Beginning with family memories of her own German and Irish grandparents, she captures the struggles, hopes, and dreams of people who just want to work and make a better life. Carlene offers the opportunity to stretch out and truly visualize the plights of the people being described and their motivation for coming to America. They left horrible poverty, violence, and persecution and risked everything they had to come to Immokalee in Southwest Florida as word spread across our borders that, "There is work in Immokalee."
More than just the vivid story of the immigrants, Carlene explains the frustrations and fears of the rural community that struggled to absorb them and the dedicated people who came to help. The immigrants' dreams of a better life and the Carlene's own journey back to the garden all began in Immokalee's Fields of Hope.
Carlene Thissen is a supermarket technology consultant whose life changed when she volunteered to teach music in an immigrant community. She earned her Master?s Degree in Latin American History at Florida International University, and then wrote Immokalee?s Fields of Hope. She previously co-authored a business book called Target 2000: The Rising Tide of TechnoMarketing.