Somos Esenciales: We Are Essential

2022, Documentary

Release Year: 2022
Country: United States
Director: Rafael Flores
Writer: Paul Flores
Producer: Paul Flores


A new short documentary film from performing artist and producer Paul S. Flores, directed by Rafael Flores, “Somos Esenciales” tells the stories of Latino Essential Workers at the Mission Food Hub in San Francisco. Both immigrant and native born volunteers at the Food Hub participated in an oral history project that examines the impact on mental health and lack of adequate services due to the COVID pandemic. The film shows the resilience and self determination of the Latino community to respond to the COVID pandemic by relying on cultural practices such as food pathways, healing circles, lowriding, volunteering and arts practices to address the decline in mental health. Ultimately Somos Esenciales puts a face on who Essential Workers are in the Latino community by sharing what they have endured and also what they hope for in the future.


About the director

Rafael Flores is Phi Beta Kappa Scholar who specializes in Directing, Social Justice Film Production, Chicano Cinema, and Third Cinema. Flores is the Co-founder of Green Eyed Media and Administrative Director for the Hidden GEM Creative Studios, an organization both based in Oakland, CA. 

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