CALA Alliance Building New Vision Of Arizona That Bridges Border

Published: Wednesday, February 22, 2017 - 2:26pm
Updated: Wednesday, February 22, 2017 - 4:20pm

(Photo by Pablo Robles)
Casandra Hernandez Faham

When she was growing up in Hermosillo, Sonora, about 180 miles south of the border, Casandra Hernandez Faham knew a lot about Arizona. In fact, everybody did. Most people in Hermosillo would take regular trips to Tucson to shop, they had travel visas and they were aware of their own relationship to the U.S.

But, when Hernandez moved to Phoenix at age 18, she found the opposite.

People here didn’t know much about their neighbors to the South, let alone Hermosillo.

Now, she works to bridge that divide. As curator for the CALA Alliance, an organization that encourages cultural understanding between people of the Americas, Hernandez works to educate Arizonans through the arts about our relationship to the Americas.

Last year, she was profiled in Phoenix New Times' Best of Phoenix edition, where she said that she thinks Arizona needs to create a new vision of itself in light of our place in the binational Sonoran desert.

So, The Show’s Lauren Gilger spoke with her again, to find out how she thinks our community is doing in creating that new vision.

A lot has changed in the last year, but Hernandez still sees a lot of hope in where we are as a community.

In that profile in New Times, she talked about SB 1070 and how it ignited a fire in the Latino community here in the Valley. Now, as immigration enforcement tactics are being ramped up across the country, she thinks we have something unique to offer.

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