Volunteers in Service to America: a Personal Journey

Chapter 4. O.M.I.C.A. - Organized Migrants in Community Action

In this site we will show images taken between 1968 and 1969 of the V.I.S.T.A. Volunteers in my group that were headquartered out of Broward County Florida. Joining VISTA, I came from Florida State University with the talent of a photo-journalist and used those skills while in VISTA.

News Release - NEWPORT, RI: Youth, idealism, poverty and hope - all are evident in Federico Santi's photographs documenting his time in South Florida with Volunteers in Service to America (VISTA) in the late 1960s. "VISTA Redux: Photographs, 1969, by Federico Santi," opening at the Newport Art Museum in Newport, Rhode Island on August 29, recalls the volunteers, migrant laborers and their families, and the music that filled Santi's world forty years ago. "VISTA Redux" runs through October, 25, 2009. The Museum will host a preview reception for its late summer shows on Friday, August 28 from 5 - 7 pm. The reception is free for Newport Art Museum members; $10.00 for non-members. RSVP (401) 848-8200 x 104. If you wish an invitation to the preview reception, just drop me a line (Federico Santi 152 Spring Street, Newport,RI 02840) and I will put one in the mail to you.

{If you are a V.I.S.T.A. Alumni, you are encouraged to visit the VISTA campus site listed below-click on it !}

An O.M.I.C.A. community meeting

I remember that the women sat on one side of the room and men sat or stood on the other side.

I used a Leica M3 camera with a fast 50mm lens using Kodak Tri-X film most of the time.

I beleive that this was taken in front of the O.M.I.C.A. office. The women on the right was my first contact with the group.

The man took me around to Migrant Camps to photograph. I had dinner at his home which was not located in a camp.

Posted signs, barbed wire kept trespassers out and Migrants in.

O.M.I.C.A. was incorporated in 1967 as a non-profit and was the strongest advocate for farmworkers in Florida. Rudy Juarez was the founder and Executive Director. He was named a Kennedy Fellow. There is an excellent web history of O.M.I.C.A. online at: Centro Campesino-Farmworker Center, Inc an Historical View

Go onto The Chapter 5: The Children of VISTA

Go back to Migrant Life in South Florida

Go back to V.I.S.T.A. Volunteers at work

Start at the Beginning

There are several chapters to follow this web page, each chronographs, through photographs by Federico Santi, the lives and times of this particular V.I.S.T.A. Volunteer group. Please feel free to email if you wish to make corrections, add comments or help with this photo history.

Our email address: drawrm@hotmail.com

Pages installed May 21, 2008

Web site for Photographer Federico Santi

This collection of photographs is located at 152-154 Spring Street, Newport, Rhode Island 02840. If you have an interest in using a specific photograph or wish to discuss publishing in either book or exhibition form please call Federico Santi at 401-261-3980. All images copyright by F. Santi and copying or used without the express permission of the photographer is forbidden.

VISTA: A time for beginning and a time for change.


The following is a list of names from an address book that I used while in V.I.S.T.A. in Broward County Florida in 1969-70: Dana Brownstein, Mark Buckbinder, Steve Ciano, Agnes Donegan, Ginny Doying, Frances Eaton, Steve Fulton, Steve Garcia, Jane Hoyme, Dave Henderson, Terry Jacobs, Rudi Juarez, Jim Kennedy, Kathy Kramer, Rob Kambak, Margo Karlek-Hildreth, Louise Lyman, Gary Maske, Paul McDonough, William Murphy, Gerald Neyman, John Riccio, Pat Russoniello, George Segal, Helen Souza, Beverly Wolfram. These people were either part of my group or I was involved with them through V.I.S.T.A. in some way.

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