We Are the Changemakers. If not us, who?
23rd Dec 2022
I still remember the apple and peanuts from that Christmas, so many years ago.
The excitement of going to the park, waiting impatiently in line, getting my own Christmas stocking, and meeting Santa…it’s one of those childhood memories which never fails to move me.
For other kids, an apple and peanuts in a stocking might be a disappointing Christmas present. But as a first-generation Mexican American whose parents struggled at times to make ends meet, it meant the world simply to get a gift for Christmas.
And it was CPLC’s Ángeles del Barrio event that made it possible for so many families like mine.
In the years since, I have made my way back to this event—this time on the other side. As an adult, as a volunteer, and, in a particularly meaningful opportunity to give back, as a sponsor.
I know events like these matter, because I was once that child.
Like these kids, I grew up in a Phoenix barrio near the CPLC headquarters, and our proximity to the organization left a big impact on me. My parents came to the US looking for greater opportunities. Chicanos Por La Causa gave us hope for a better future.
As divisions in the US seem to keep growing and the American dream further out of grasp for people of marginalized communities, Chicanos Por La Causa remains the institution we can look to for hope and a helping hand.
When I started my term as Board President with CPLC, we were operating mainly in Arizona, where the movement started. Four years later, I look at what CPLC has accomplished and marvel at the fact we now provide services in five states—and are striving for more!
Chicanos Por La Causa continues to adapt to the needs of our community.
We have launched high schools, young women’s shelters, and college scholarships for students determined to succeed. We have supported small businesses and female entrepreneurship. We are helping young refugees gain valuable skills they can use in the workplace and providing the technology youth and seniors need for school and work.
I am glad I was able to contribute to this movement. Now, as my term as Board President is coming to a close, and I am retiring from my longtime employer, I am more committed than ever to stay close to CPLC.
I look forward to continuing to volunteer and support by donating. I invite you to join me, and be a part of the next generation of CPLC Ángeles.
This holiday season, show your support by making a donation to one of CPLC’s programs meeting urgent needs in the community. Anything helps.
I remember how happy I was to receive that apple and peanuts. Because for me, it meant so much more than an afternoon snack—it meant that Santa didn’t forget me.
Because we are the changemakers. If not us, who?