A new organization is looking to serve the needs of Wasatch County’s Latino population. The coalition is bringing leading organizations together to better serve the Spanish speaking community.
Wasatch Latino Coalition Chairperson/President Yuri Jenson shared that the coalition envisions an empowered, integrated, and thriving Latino community where all contribute to the wellbeing and development of Wasatch County. Jenson outlines the coalitions mission.
“The coalitions mission is to connect families with resources and advocate for the greater impact through education, collaboration and engagement of the Latino community,” Jenson continued. “So yes, indeed it envisions the future of an empowered, integrated, and more inclusive life for everyone in Wasatch County.”
The coalition is currently made up of about 15 members. Though everyone is welcome to join, most of the coalition is made up of representatives from local organizations who asked how they could serve the community better.
“Including Wasatch County Library, Wasatch Mental Health, Heber City Police Department, Wasatch School District, Peoples Health Clinic, the Wasatch County Sheriff’s Office, Christian Center of Park City” Jenson explained. “We have also local religious groups, local entrepreneurs, and also community volunteers in many other organizations.”
The Coalition is involved with a number of events including offering love and logic parenting classes in Spanish, translating a variety of community events, and hosting the first Latino night as part of the Heber Valley Concert Series on August 8th.
“On that night we’re also going to provide prizes,” Jenson said. “We have a folkloric group Quetzalcoatl, that we hope that not just the Latino community enjoys that, but everybody. We believe that we are rich in diversity. We want to make sure that the people from Wasatch County also gets to know us, to understand us. To take a little bit about the culture and traditions the Latino community has home.”
At Latino night the coalition will be issuing a survey to help identify needs in the Latino community.
“With this survey we actually can hear from them what they want,” Jenson continued. “Based on age groups, the whole family, single parents, parents of families who have documents or no documents. We want to gather all that information. So far based on the members experience and perspective we know the transportation is a huge need. Education, literacy, English classes, affordable housing, youth support services, and many others, like financial resources employment, counseling, communication, resources for victims. We want to make sure that we prioritize what is the need and start working with that so we can serve them better.”
Jenson says they plan to publish the survey results in the next month or two. She says the coalition has a lot of resources they hope to provide to the community.
“We want to also make sure that they feel welcomed and included,” Jenson explained. “When I moved here last year, I noticed the community, they were not as engaged. They were everywhere, right you can see family’s going everywhere, but there’s still a miscommunication. We’re trying to make sure that we close that gap.”
Coalition meetings are held monthly at the Wasatch Health Department. Their next meeting is August 20th. You can find more information on the Wasatch Latino Coalition Facebook page or by emailing WasatchLatinoCoalition@gmail.com
Read the original at KPCW.org