We believe that a quality education is the single most important investment we can make in our Latino communities. That’s why Centro Latino directs educational programs that support students and their families at every stage. We also advocate for Latinos and other underserved families to obtain the tools, resources and opportunities they need to succeed academically and in life.
Immigrants are remaking America. In many urban and rural areas, the arrival of immigrants from Latin America has transformed whole communities. Much like new Americans of yesteryear, our modern-day crop of immigrants have contributed greatly to our nation’s economy, culture and overall well-being. Yet this transformation has been difficult. Anti-immigrant rhetoric and legislation in the United States has surged tremendously over the past decade. And the failure of Congress to enact meaningful, comprehensive immigration reform has clouded the future of immigrant families, forcing them to live apart, or fearful of deportation.
Centro Latino has worked relentlessly to protect and advance immigrant rights since its inception. Our early efforts focused on local advocacy and English as a Second Language (ESL) classes. Today, Centro Latino has expanded its focus to include immigrant integration and expanded its focus to advocate for progressive immigration reforms.
Families in Crisis
Each and every day, Centro Latino lives into its vision of extending hospitality, transforming lives, and pursuing justice by serving its underserved and low income neighbors and seeking adequate, affordable housing. For the past two decades, this calling has been a signature focus of its community engagement.
Centro Latino provides basic services for anyone in need. It’s our way of affirming the dignity of our neighbors who may need clean clothes, a phone call or message from family and the support needed to take the next step out of homelessness or despair. These services provide additional opportunities for individuals in need to connect with caring volunteers and staff, enabling further contact with the continuum of care and services in Shelby and surrounding counties.
- Clothes Closet
- English as a Second Language
- Educational programs
- Support groups
Latin Center Programs
- English as a Second Language classes
- GED classes taught in Spanish
- Child-care provided during class as well as snacks and beverages
- Camp Centro Latino, a summer program for academically at-risk Latino children
- Backpack program for 65-70 Latino children needing school supplies and backpacks
- Clothes closet: free clothes, shoes, jackets, coats, household furnishings and appliances
- Food program: fresh produce, bean, rice, breads and canned goods available daily
- Monthly Latina Women’s meetings with meditation, a speaker, a hot meal and child care
- Latina Women’s Living Room, a family gathering space to read, visit, use a computer
- Art programs for the Latino men during the winter months where there is no work
- Coffee and snacks each morning for the men who are waiting to be picked up for a job
Advocacy Program provides assistance or makes connections for those experiencing trouble such as:
- Wage theft
- Landlord – tenant issues
- Food stamp applications
- Health insurance application for children
- Job applications and resumes
- Help for single parents
- Domestic violence
- Sexual harassment
- Medical appointments and transportation
- Teen pregnancy
- Suicidal teenagers and their distraught parents
- Bus schedule
- Legal issues immigration issues
- Tracking family members being held by immigrations services as well as those in jail for issues such as driving without a license, speeding etc.