Kaleidoscope Play and Learn (Evento en Español)

What is Kaleidoscope Play & Learn?
Kaleidoscope Play & Learn groups are gathering spaces for Family, Friend, and Neighbor caregivers, parent, and young children to meet with others in their community and learn about fostering healthy child development and school readiness. Kaleidoscope Play & Learn is a place where everyone, children and adults, learn through play. Groups are led by members of the community in culturally-responsive environments.

¿Qué es Kaleidoscope Play & Learn?
Los grupos Kaleidoscope Play & Learn son espacios de reunión para que familiares, amigos y vecinos, cuidadores, padres y niños pequeños se reúnan con otras personas en su comunidad y aprendan cómo fomentar el desarrollo infantil saludable y la preparación escolar. Kaleidoscope Play & Learn es un lugar donde todos, niños y adultos, aprendemos jugando. Los grupos están dirigidos por miembros de la comunidad en entornos culturalmente receptivos.

Servicios Dentales Gratis

SÁBADO 2 DE DICIEMBRE DE 2023

8:00 AM – 2:00 PM

Tratamiento para necesidades dentales URGENTES: *Extracciones *Rellenos *Radiografías *Exámenes dentales

Elegibilidad: Los adultos deben ser residentes del condado de King y no ser elegibles para Washington Apple Health o Medicaid debido a su condición de ciudadanía, además de cumplir con los límites de ingresos.

CONTÁCTENOS PARA VER SI USTED ES ELEGIBLE PARA UNA CITA

800-756-5437 – kcadp@kingcounty.gov

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 2, 2023

8:00 AM – 2:00 PM

Treatment for URGENT dental needs: *Extractions *Fillings *X-rays *Dental exams

Eligibility:

Adults must be residents of King County and not be eligible for Washington Apple Health or Medicaid due to their citizenship status, in addition to meeting income limits.

CONTACT US TO SEE IF YOU ARE ELIGIBLE FOR AN APPOINTMENT

800-756-5437 – kcadp@kingcounty.gov

NewsLETTER: November 2023

Solidarity Statement for Peace and Justice in Israel/Palestine 

Thursday, November 16th, 2023

As faith leaders, elected officials, community leaders, educators, and individual residents of Washington state, we are heartbroken and horrified by the escalated violence and bloodshed in Israel/Palestine. As people of all faith backgrounds and conscience, we deeply value life, and are appalled by the significant loss of human life. 

We condemn all targeting and killing of civilians, whether Israeli or Palestinian, of any or no faith background. Such indiscriminate violence harming innocent civilians is not only a violation of law, but also of basic morality and human decency. While this violence occurs in the context of daily injustices under a military occupation of Palestinians, we are outraged at the mass scale  of kidnappings and killings of Israeli civilians including children, women and the elderly on October 7, 2023, as well as the mass killings, bombings and displacement of human beings away from their homes and communities as collective punishment of the 2.3 million people in Gaza (nearly half of which are children) since then. We must prevent more devastation. 

Both the Talmud and the Quran recognize that killing one life is like killing all of humanity, and saving one life is like saving all of humanity (Mishnah Sanhedrin 4:5; Quran 5:32). Our hearts grieve for the loss of humanity right now, and we will strive – through the world’s brokenness – to find hope, and save all of humanity by saving even one life. 

Accordingly, we reject the efforts to add further fuel to the fire of violence and vengeance through reactionary rhetoric or revenge-seeking actions. Our hearts recognize the tragedy, trauma and terror experienced by all peoples in and connected to the region. We are committed to “holding the whole” and feeling the pain of those who are currently suffering, oppressed, grieving, heartbroken, and/or terrified. In the face of deepening polarization, we choose the side of peace and justice. We recognize the horror experienced by all right now, and we uplift the humanity of all peoples in the region. 

Further, we reject the efforts to conflate the actions of Hamas with the Palestinian people, just as we reject equating the actions of the Israeli military or government with the people living in Israel or Jews across the globe. 

We call on the United States to use its influence and position to facilitate de-escalation in the region. We call for an immediate ceasefire; the safe return of the hostages captured by Hamas; the safe return of those displaced from their homes; a stop to the acts of war by the Israeli military that violate international law; the restoration of basic necessities like food, water, electricity, and medical services to the Gazan people; and the opening of humanitarian aid corridors. We ask all of our elected officials in Washington state and beyond to amplify these calls and to take action to achieve them. 

In addition, we condemn antisemitism, islamophobia, xenophobia, and anti-Arab bigotry and violence that may result, as we have tragically seen with the brutal stabbing that killed 6-year-old Palestinian-American Wadea Al-Fayoume in Illinois. We call upon elected officials, corporate leaders, and school administrators in Washington state to be a voice for safety and calm, and to provide support to all those impacted during this devastating crisis, especially the children. 

Together, we envision a world of peace and justice in Israel/Palestine, an area that is sacred to people of all three Abrahamic faith traditions. A world that embraces and delivers safety and security, freedom and liberation to everyone who inhabits the land, which necessarily requires an end to the decades-long military occupation. We look forward to the day when our beloved Israeli and Palestinian children alike will be able to celebrate life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness together. 

In the powerful words of James Baldwin, ‘the children are always ours, every single one of them, all over the globe; and I am beginning to suspect that whoever is incapable of recognizing this may be incapable of morality”. 

Add Your Name to this Statement Below!

Link for individuals here. Link for organizations here.

Cuentos From Our Programs and Community: November 2023

Si Se Puede Academy

The one-year milestone of our Si Se Puede Academy’s GED program marks a significant achievement. Over this past year, 56 students have directly benefited from our program’s tailored support. Our academy focuses on scholars in King County, providing a specialized and year-round General Education Development (GED) program designed to meet their educational needs. The impact extends beyond just academics; it encompasses mentorship, career preparation, and a supportive community tailored to ensure these scholars have the resources and guidance to excel. This anniversary is a testament to our commitment to nurturing educational success among the youth in our community. Learn more here.

Bilingual Free Legal Clinic

As we conclude this season of our Free Legal Clinic, we’re proud to highlight the impact made. In November, our clinic supported over 80 individuals, delivering around $16,000 worth of pro bono services to our community. A heartfelt thank you goes out to the volunteer attorneys and translators whose dedication made this possible.


Enviornmental Justice Navigator, Ivan Monte

Learn from Ivan Monte, our Weatherization and Environmental Justice Navigator, as he discusses pivotal insights with Emerald Cities Northwest here.

18th Annual Dia de los Muertos Celebration

Rain or shine, together, we commemorated our loved ones in a truly unforgettable 18th Annual Dia de los Muertos Celebration at El Centro de la Raza. Your unwavering support and enthusiastic participation made this event an incredible success, and we’re thrilled to share the highlights with you here!

Despite the weather’s whims, our spirits remained high as we honored our lost loved ones in a celebration filled with cultural richness and heartfelt remembrance. From the young to the young at heart, the celebration offered something special for everyone. The children’s activities were a hit, sparking creativity and laughter among our little ones. Meanwhile, the entertainment at our Centilia Cultural Center captivated audiences, celebrating the vibrant traditions of Dia de los Muertos.

Our Pop-up Mercado was abuzz with excitement, showcasing local artisans and their incredible crafts. We’re proud to share that we served over 1,000 plates of flavorful mole and delighted over 2,000 attendees with traditional chocolate caliente.

We extend our heartfelt gratitude to everyone who contributed to the success of this event—our sponsors, funders, volunteers, vendors, performers, and, most importantly, our wonderful community. Your presence and active participation infused the celebration with warmth and authenticity. A big shout-out goes to photographer Aidan Sales!  

Once again, thank you for being a part of El Centro de la Raza’s 18th Annual Dia de los Muertos Celebration. Your presence illuminated the event and made it an occasion to remember. Let’s continue to honor our traditions, cherish our loved ones, and build a future filled with unity and togetherness.

Photographs by Aidan Sales.

NewsLETTER: OCTOBER 2023

Recap of the Building the Beloved Community Gala 2023

We’re thrilled to share the highlights from our spectacular annual Building the Beloved Community Gala, which took place last Saturday, October 14, 2023. This event was a remarkable success, and it wouldn’t have been possible without your support.

An Unforgettable Evening: The gala was a night to remember, with attendees coming together to raise crucial funds for 43 programs and services that positively impact over 20,000 individuals and families across our region.

The Gala in a Glance:

  • Musical Magic: Banda Vagos set the stage on fire with their electrifying live music, creating a vibrant atmosphere that had everyone on their feet.
  • Networking and Connections: The reception was a fantastic opportunity for attendees to connect, share stories, and strengthen the bonds that make our community special.
  • Speakers & Presenters: Aneelah Afzali, Maria Casarez, Enrique Cerna, Pablo Cohen, Juan Flores, Veronica Gallardo, Fred Granados, Elisa Jimenez, Anika Lehde, Claudia Lendo, Daniela Lizarraga, Miguel Maestas, Jesus Mendoza, Mimi Santos and Estela Ortega.
  • Bidding Wars: Our silent and live auctions provided an exciting experience for all, with one-of-a-kind items and experiences up for grabs, all for a great cause.
  • Culinary Excellence: The three-course meal was a culinary delight, pleasing the palates of all who attended.
  • Honoring Remarkable Contributions: A highlight of the evening was the presentation of the Roberto Maestas Legacy Awards, Roxana Norouzi, Executive Director of OneAmerica and Keith Tucker, Founder and Executive Director of Hip Hop is Gree, individuals who have made outstanding contributions to our beloved community.
  • 2023 Roberto Felipe Maestas Scholarship Recipients: We take great pride in recognizing the diligent efforts and unwavering dedication of 20 promising scholars who attended Thomas Jefferson High School in Federal Way and are part of our Hope for Youth and ELEVAR Case Management Programs: Angel Sanchez, Astrid Mejia, Celeste Guzman, Claudia Lendo, Crystal Morales, Edwin Hernandez, Erandy Loes Ramirez, Israel Vasquez, Jasmine Venegas, Jany Aguilar Ramirez, Joel Jesus Quinones, Kathia Toro, Keila Gaspar, Luz Seleni Chaves, Mariana Leos-Bravo, Mayra Aguirre, Nicolas Nava, Oscar Perez, Reyny Gonzalez and Valeria Perez-Cruz.
  • Mil gracias to our El Centro de la Raza team, as well as William Wright Photography.

Your Invaluable Support: We want to express our deepest gratitude to all the attendees, donors, volunteers, and sponsors who made this gala a tremendous success. Your support enables us to continue our mission of building a beloved community that benefits thousands of lives.

Stay Connected: We look forward to keeping you updated on the impact of your contributions and the progress we make throughout the year.

Thank you for being a part of this memorable night and for your unwavering commitment to our cause. Together, we are making a real difference in our community.

Warm regards,

El Centro de la Raza

¡Mil Gracias to our Volunteers!


We extend our heartfelt gratitude to the dedicated volunteers from Starbucks, Microsoft, Seattle University, and the University of Washington. Your unwavering commitment to our cause is nothing short of inspiring. We look forward to continued collaboration and the positive change we can create together. Thank you for being the driving force behind our mission.

¡Mil Gracias to our Sponsors!

TAKE ACTION: SEPTEMBER 2023

VOTE YES FOR PROP 1: SEATTLE HOUSING LEVY

Don’t wait until election day! Vote today. Go to VoteWA.gov for information about voting center and ballot drop box locations near you.

We strongly encourage you to vote YES for Prop One, The Seattle Housing Levy, to help ensure affordable housing options for our community’s most vulnerable members. Your support can make a significant difference in addressing housing affordability in Seattle. Learn more here.

How Vaping Harms Students’ Mental Health: Tips For Parents and Educators

Beginning a new school year can be stressful for students. However, it’s important to know that vapes, like cigarettes, can negatively impact students’ physical and mental health. Parents, teachers, mentors, and school administrators can offer guidance and tools to help students make informed decisions. What can parents, teachers, influential adults, and school administrators do? Let more here.

Latino Democratic Caucus Statement on Palmer v Hobbs Voting Rights Act Decision

OLYMPIA – On August 10, the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington ruled in favor of Latino voters living in Central Washington in Palmer v Hobbs, finding that Washington’s legislative map violates the federal Voting Rights Act. The court concluded that the districts drawn in the Yakima Valley dilute the Latino vote and prevent the Latino community from electing representatives of their choice. The bicameral Latino Democratic Caucus released the following statement in response:

“We, the members of the Washington State Latino Democratic Caucus, strongly support creating fair and just electoral maps to ensure that the voices of the Latino community are heard.

“The dilution of Latino votes is not new in Washington State. In 2018, the Legislature passed the Washington Voting Rights Act to provide a remedy for the known problem of voter dilution in municipalities and counties. This year, the Legislature passed the Washington Voting Rights Act (WVRA) 2.0, to strengthen and improve the WVRA by making it easier for communities of interest to bring voter dilution claims and to allow plaintiffs to recover costs when a remedy is implemented.

“Latino voters from the Yakima Valley won enfranchisement for their community in court, and we support their right to propose their preferred remedy directly to the court. The bipartisan Redistricting Commission failed to draw a legislative map that complied with the federal VRA. We support voters seeking justice in a forum where it has already been achieved, devoid of partisanship and gamesmanship. We do not support reconvening the Redistricting Commission.

“We are committed to fair representation in our government at every level. The Latino community deserve the opportunity to elect leaders of its choice to the state Legislature. To have a truly representative democracy voters must be able to exercise their rights in a just system.” Learn more here.

Cuentos From Our Programs and Community: August 2023

Exciting Food News Alert! Introducing La Pisca with Dulce Santos at Plaza Roberto Maestas!

Craving some delicious bites? We’ve got you covered with mouthwatering Elote, Esquites, and Toste-esquites, all for just $7 each!

Operating Hours: 12PM – 7PM

Days: Tuesday – Saturday

But wait, there’s more! La Pisca isn’t just any food business – it’s proudly presented by El Centro de la Raza – Business Opportunity Center (BOC). We’re all about supporting local ventures and bringing you flavors that’ll make your taste buds dance. 

Come on down and savor the flavors of La Pisca!


Free Legal Clinic

Providing free legal assistance can level the playing field for clients who aren’t able to pay for capable consultations. 

Our Free Legal Clinic in August assisted 50+ people and provided approximately $10,000 worth of pro bono services to our community. A special thank you to the volunteer attorneys and translators.  

Receive free, limited advice at our next clinic, on September 13.


Si Se Puede Academy

Our Si Se Puede Academy has 41 scholars, 18-21 years old in King County, enrolled in our year-round General Education Development (GED) program. Three have officially graduated, with more anticipated by the end of August 2023.  Jovens gain access to mentors that look like them, prepare for high paying careers, experience culturally focused field trips and build a connection with nature, porque aqui… ¡Si Se Puede! 

Take a look at the jovens enjoying a field trip at el lago!

Digital Skills for Life Training

Por parte de El Centro de la Raza, los queremos invitar a nuestra capacitación gratuita: Habilidades Digitales que se realizara lunes y miércoles de 5:30 – 7:30pm por zoom comenzando el 24 de julio al 23 de agosto.  Si están interesados, favor de contactar a Yadira Alvarez al 206.957.4620 o por correo electrónico a yalvarez@elcentrodelaraza.orgEl curso tiene espacio limitado, por lo que se les invita a inscribirse lo antes posible.

Capacitación de Habilidades Digitales

24 de Julio – 23 de Agosto, 2023

Lunes y Miércoles

Clases Virtuales Por Zoom

5:30 – 7:30 PM

 

Gracias a Google y UnidosUS, el curso ayuda a participantes a conocer conceptos básicos de computación incluyendo:

Proteger a sus hijos de la tecnología – obtendrán información de herramientas y plataformas para evitar contenido inapropiado y protección de fraude para sus hijos.

Conocer los elementos de una Computadora

Conocer programas de oficina como Word, Excel, y PowerPoint

Obtendrán herramientas para navegar en internet

 

Los esperamos!

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On behalf of El Centro de la Raza, we want to invite you to our free Spanish digital literacy training: Digital Skills for Life that will take place Mondays and Wednesdays from 5:30 – 7:30 pm via zoom. The training begins July 24th – August 23rd, 2023.  If you are interested, please contact Yadira Alvarez at 206.957.4620 or via email at yalvarez@elcentrodelaraza.orgPlease contact us soon as the course has limited space.

 

Digital Skills For Life Training

July 24th – August 23rd, 2023

Monday and Wednesday

Virtual via Zoom

5:30 – 7:30 PM

 

Thanks to Google and UnidosUS, the course will help participants learn basic computer concepts including:

Protect your children from technology – learn best practices to block inappropriate digital content

Know the elements of a computer

Learn about office programs such as Word, Excel, and PowerPoint

Best practices for surfing the internet

 

We look forward to seeing you!

2023 Día de los Reyes Recap

Gracias to everyone that came out to celebrate with us at our Día de los Reyes events!

Mil gracias to the students, teachers, and parents of our José Martí Child Development Centers for their traditional performance of the procession of los Tres Reyes Magos! Gracias also to all our small business vendors who were selling such amazing products.

History & Significance of Día de los Reyes

January 6th marks a symbolic celebration among the Mexican culture and various areas around the globe as we celebrate Día de Los Reyes also known as Three Kings’ Day. The holiday represents the day the Three Wise Men: Melchior, Gaspar, and Balthazar, representing Arabia, the Orient, and Africa, arrived on horse, camel, and elephant, bringing gold, incense and myrrh to the baby Jesus after following what is known as the Christmas star to the town of Bethlehem.

In honor of the Three Kings bringing gifts to the baby Jesus, children in Latin America, and around the world celebrate by exchanging gifts. As tradition, children leave out their shoes on the night of January 5th for the Three Kings and the next morning they awake to find gifts for them. Another common tradition during Día de Los Reyes is to bake or purchase and serve Rosca de Reyes, or King’s Cake. The Rosca is shaped like a wreath and decorated with candied fruit, and the most important part, baked with a small baby Jesus doll inside. Whoever gets the piece of the Rosca with the doll has to have a celebration on Día de la Candelaria in February. In the Mexican culture, the host will serve tamales, and a Mexican hot chocolate or champurrado.


El 6 de Enero marca una celebración simbólica entre la cultura Mexicana y varias partes del mundo, ya que celebramos el Día de Reyes, también conocido como el Día de los Reyes Magos. La celebración representa el día en que los Tres Reyes Magos: Melchor, Gaspar y Baltasar, que representan Arabia, el Oriente y África, llegaron a caballo, camello y elefante, trayendo oro, incienso y mirra al niño Jesús después de seguir lo que se conoce como la estrella de Belén.

En honor a los Reyes Magos que traen regalos al niño Jesús, los niños en Latinoamérica y en todo el mundo celebran intercambiando regalos. Como tradición, los niños dejan sus zapatos afuera la noche del 5 de Enero para los Reyes Magos y la mañana siguiente se despiertan para encontrar regalos para ellos. Otra tradición común en el Día de Los Reyes es hacer o comprar y servir una Rosca de Reyes. La Rosca tiene forma de corona y está decorada con fruta seca, y la parte más importante, horneada con un pequeño muñeco Jesús en su interior. Quien corte la pieza de la Rosca con el muñeco tiene que tener una celebración el Día de la Candelaria en Febrero. En la cultura Mexicana, el anfitrión sirve tamales y un chocolate caliente o champurrado.

February 2022: Cuentos from Our Work in the Community

Organizing & Training Our Environmental Justice Leaders

Training has begun for El Patio and Plaza Roberto Maestas residents in environmental justice leadership, education and community organizing in the Latino community.

Through this program, Beacon Hill residents are learning how to advocate for better health and environmental outcomes and influence policymakers to protect their community from the disproportional impacts of massive transportation developments in the works.

For context, Beacon Hill is already surrounded by major roadways.  On average, every 90 seconds, an aircraft will fly over Beacon Hill.  70% of aircraft traveling to and from Seattle fly over Beacon Hill. This causes intense noise pollution, which has adverse effects on stress levels, sleep, cardiovascular health, and youth’s learning capabilities. Though they are certainly considered a vertical fenceline community, they are not a fenceline community and are not eligible for mitigation. Additionally, residents of Beacon Hill are predominantly people of color, who already tend to be disproportionately harmed by environmental issues.

Apart from learning to measure air and noise pollution and advocate for bills that address this issue, participants were able to connect with other environmental justice-based organizations such as the nonprofit organization Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition (DRCC).  Residents learned how other communities are organizing and supported the DRCC’s signature-gathering efforts for their petition on Change.org. 

Through storytelling, community building, and leadership development, participants are prepared to effectively fight the proposed Sea-Tac Airport Sustainable Air Master Plan (SAMP).  Follow and join our movement against SAMP here:  We Fight For Environmental & Health Justice – El Centro de la Raza

Our Highest Turnout and Certification for New Homebuyers Yet!

In the face of a deepening housing crisis, we are proud to report the highest level of enrollment and certification for our first-time homebuyer workshop of 2022.  A total of 84 participants enrolled, and 42 received a two-year certificate that will grant them access to Washington Housing Finance Commission programs and Down Payment Assistance.

Apart from providing these classes online in English and Spanish at no-cost, our program is unique in providing home loan options for ITIN holders. 

To offer a comprehensive overview of the process, we welcomed a real estate agent and a lender certified by the Washington Housing Finance Commission.  The topics we covered ran the gamut from credit-strengthening and budgeting to title, escrows, home insurance and inspection.

Please share our joy with the future homeowners from our program below:

The health and success of El Centro de la Raza begins with you. Support from a broad base of community members including foundations, individuals, and corporations is critical to our success and we ask that you carefully consider making a personally meaningful gift – it may be the largest gift you have ever made.

Legacy Award Nominations are Open


El Centro de la Raza turns 50 this year! Help us celebrate by nominating someone who is doing important Social Justice work in our community for the Roberto Felipe Maestas Legacy Award. The Legacy Awards are our way of honoring of our late founder, Roberto Maestas, who helped organize the 1972 peaceful occupation of the abandoned Beacon Hill school, which later became El Centro de la Raza as we know it today. Roberto Maestas’s life was dedicated to building “Beloved Community” through multi-racial unity. He deeply believed that poverty, racism and social inequity could only be eradicated if people of all races and backgrounds came together to do so.

The 12th Annual Roberto Felipe Maestas Legacy Award will recognize two individuals who have exemplified Building the Beloved Community through multi-racial unity and working to eliminate poverty, racism and social inequity. We encourage people of all races, ethnicities, ages, and gender identities to apply for this award. 
 
El Centro de la Raza will celebrate awardees and their contributions by making a $1,000 gift in their name to an organization of their choice.  Award recipients will be recognized at El Centro de la Raza’s 50th Anniversary Building the Beloved Community Gala, which is set to take place on Saturday, October 8, 2022.
 
Legacy Award applicants can self-nominate or be nominated by someone else. Recipients are asked to attend El Centro de la Raza’s Building the Beloved Community Gala.
 
Deadline for application submission is Tuesday, May 31, 2022 at 5:00pm Pacific Time. 

Please nominate yourself or someone you know today via our form.

Read about our 2021 honorees, Dr. Estell Williams and Edwin Lindo

The health and success of El Centro de la Raza begins with you. Support from a broad base of community members including foundations, individuals, and corporations is critical to our success and we ask that you carefully consider making a personally meaningful gift – it may be the largest gift you have ever made.