TV show's new season highlights volunteer work across the Americas

Buenos Aires, Oct 1 (EFE).- A new season of the TV series "Piedra, papel, tijera," a volunteer initiative of satellite operator DirecTV, will kick off on Sunday with a mission to showcase the underappreciated efforts of different foundations across the Americas.

Produced by DirecTV and available in Latin America via its signal to that region, the seventh season will feature a new host, Argentine journalist Gonzalo Rodriguez, who has swapped the sunglasses he used for the alternative news show "Caiga Quien Caiga" for a T-shirt that bears the message "making a difference is in our hands."

The show's title is a play on words, referring both to the game "rock, paper, scissors" and materials that could be used to renovate and beautify the physical infrastructure of schools and community organizations.

"The goal is to improve people's lives through volunteer work. What I've discovered with this is that unskilled labor becomes skilled labor because people do it with love," Rodriguez told EFE.

The host said that he considered himself a "goodwill connector" and that he would provide a touch of humor to the series, adding that he hopes it proves infectious and inspires others to do their part.

The 12 episodes that make up the new season feature projects in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, the United States, Peru, Puerto Rico, Trinidad and Tobago, Uruguay and Venezuela.

The host told EFE viewers would learn the stories of "anonymous heroes," people who work to make others' lives better with little or no recognition of their efforts.

In one project in Puerto Rico, Emilio Lozada wants to refurbish his boxing gym to provide a space for street children and young drug users to train and is chosen to receive assistance in doing so from the "Piedra, papel y tijera" volunteers, which include DirecTV employees, customers and employees' family members.

The show also will introduce Manuel Lozano, one of the coordinators of the Fundacion Si (Yes Foundation), which has already worked in nine Argentine provinces and now has decided to build university residences in the northern province of Santiago del Estero.

Those residences will serve as homes for young people from rural areas who live four or five hours from the nearest university, Lozano said.

"For these young people going to university would mean them becoming the first to have (access to) higher education, not only in their families but also their communities, which in many cases number 300 or 400 inhabitants," he added.