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Changemaker Highlight of the Week: Latino Community Outreach

Posted: Thursday, March 23, 2023

The University of Evansville's (UE) Latino Community Outreach ChangeLab functions to assist the local Latino community with their needs. From translation of materials and documents, to helping during vaccination clinics, the members of this ChangeLab work diligently to ensure the local Latino community have readily available resources.

Members of the ChangeLab have assisted with various forms of education. The group has incorporated "Latino Healthcare," a workshop presented by these ChangeLab students to medical providers in the Ascension southern region of Indiana. This encompasses all representatives and managers of primary care and essentially all specialty practices, urgent cares, and Tri State Community Clinics.

They have also held events spotlighting breast cancer awareness and included screening and free mammograms for Latinas in conjunction with Ascension St. Vincent.

The Latino Community Outreach ChangeLab works extensively in the community. Members have hosted meetings with middle school Latino students and parents to promote bilingualism, and to explain the need for bilingual healthcare professionals. The goal of these meetings is to acquaint Latinos with the Medical Professions Academy at Central High School and walk them through the application process. The group has also visited with elementary students who speak little English to encourage them to continue speaking Spanish and be proud of their culture.

The work continues to evolve and has included afterschool programs teaching diverse students in K-8 grades basic Spanish vocab and Hispanic culture. At Carver Community Organization's Afterschool Program and Washington Middle School Afterschool Program, the ChangeLab created a Club de Espanol.

Every Sunday, English as a Second Language Classes are held at Holy Rosary Catholic Church to help Latinos develop greater proficiency in English to benefit their work in society as a whole.

ChangeLab students who have taken Spanish throughout high school or who have taken classes in college (as well as native speakers) enjoy these educational initiatives and serve as interpreters and translators for these projects.

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