(CNN)After a day picking cranberries at a California farm, Josefino Cervantes Alvarado sat down for dinner to a unique mix of voices and music filling the room.
"Greetings to everybody tuning in to Radio Indígena 94.1 FM," said a voice coming from the radio's speakers in Spanish. Moments later, he heard another voice speaking in Mixteco — one of several indigenous languages from southern Mexico.
"I used to feel ashamed of speaking Mixteco," Cervantes Alvarado, 40, whose first language is Mixteco, said in Spanish. "Whenever I listen to (the radio), I feel proud of who I am and don't want my children to forget that."
When the Covid-19 pandemic first hit the United States, the hosts of Radio Indígena were among the first people who could explain Covid-19 to indigenous Mexican farmworkers in Ventura County, thanks to their ability to switch between Spanish, Mixteco and other indigenous languages. As the months passed, they took to debunking coronavirus misinformation.
The Mixteco/Indigena Community Organizing Project (MICOP), a group that runs the radio station and helps indigenous families in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties, estimates that about 20,000 people from southern Mexico live in the area. Most of them are farmworkers and some only speak their indigenous language.