Mission: As an organization grounded in the latino community, our mission is to build unity across all racial and economic sectors, to organize, empower, and defend our most vulnerable and marginalized populations and to bring justice, dignity, equality, and freedom to all the peoples of the world.
Programs: Child & youth programs: investing in our children and their future, el centro de la raza provides an array of bilingual, multicultural child and youth services to the local community. These programs are free with the exception of the child development center and after school program, which are fee-based but also provide subsidies for low-income families. Through these services: -infants and young children meet development milestones. -young children are prepared to enter kindergarten. -students develop and strengthen skills and/or habits that support academic success. -educationally at-risk students make academic progress. -at-risk youth develop computer and technology skills. -at-risk youth are encouraged and better prepared to pursue and/or enroll in post-secondary education. -parents and guardians participate in children's learning. -identify, alleviate, and meet the needs of at-risk pregnant women.
human & emergency services: seeking to address immediate aspects of human suffering such as hunger, healthcare and homelessness, our frances martinez community service center provides diverse, bilingual human services and emergency services. Through these services: -people meet their basic food needs. -people transitioning out of homelessness secure permanent housing. -older adults maintain the highest possible quality of life. -families and individuals are able to access basic health insurance plans. -increase access and awareness of human services, housing, and health resources for all veterans -individuals and families in crisis receive immediate information, referral and services
education & skill building programs: el centro de la raza promotes self-sufficiency and empowerment through free bilingual education and skill building initiatives. Through these services: -people acquire job search skills, gain employment and retain jobs/increase benefits. -low and moderate-income families are able to purchase a home. -at-risk youth increase computer skills -families and individuals increase knowledge of taxes and tax credits. -homeowners are able to avoid foreclosure through default counseling. -families and individuals increase knowledge of banking and personal money management. -people acquire and improve english language and literacy skills. -engage latino families and community members in juvenile justice advocacy and policy issues
community building & advocacy: el centro believes that only through civic involvement, grassroots organizing and social activism will our community will be able to effectively address the profound contradictions facing our world. We unite communities of all races, genders, ages and classes to fight for civil and human rights locally and globally. We engage the community through listening sessions, cafe con el centro, comadres women's support group, cultural events (including cinco de mayo and dia de los muertos), social media and e-newsletters. Volunteerism is the lifeblood of the organization, and our volunteer program recruits more than 1,200 volunteers a year to ensure that our program participants achieve their outcomes. El centro also provides housing for low-income families, further strengthening our community. El centro also participates in local, state, national and international coalition building, and advocate for immigrant/human/civil rights and social justice. Throughout our history, we have worked in several advocacy areas. The organization has also been advocating in areas of law enforcement and education, police accountability, and closing the academic achievement gap faced by latino youth, and promoting better transportation options for low-income people and communities of color.