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A LOCAL PERSPECTIVE THE TEMPERATURE OF THE COMMUNITY IN MAMARONECK It is historic that immigrants have difficulties adjusting to new countries,

communities, cultures and most importantly language. Getting on your feet, becoming familiar takes time and it seems that as time passes our expectations get higher and higher as to how soon we expect people to adjust, and sadly resources are not as readily available to facilitate success in the process of integration. There is so much work to do to improve the situation of the Latino Community: housing, education, fair employment for men and women, child care, recreation, hope for the students who graduate regarding the future and access to good health care to mention a few. The wider picture involves legislation, the need for drivers licenses, comprehensive immigration reform, Dream Act being passed, to begin to address the issues of inequality. We could focus on legislation and wait for something to happen at Federal, State or County levels. Yet, we can look at our own community, where if we put the effort to work together, cooperate, coordinate and compromise a little, we might do something quite remarkable. People have different views regarding the recipe and we all work so hard on our own recipes. The Hispanic Resource Center is working toward bringing the Latino Community together bridge those who are more established and those who are still overwhelmed by the challenges of recent migration to the country or to the neighborhood. We feel strongly that if agencies coordinate and collaborate much can be accomplished. If we communicate more, we can reach more. Openness, solidarity and integrity in the efforts are crucial. Thus I wish to share our work, upcoming programs and an update on the Day Laborer's Lawsuit status. All our services are free of charge and we have been able to do our work for 8 years through the generosity of individuals, foundations, county and state of New York. 1. UPDATE ON DAY LABORERS: Lawsuit negotiations, are taking place. Not being part of the lawsuit I really cant say what are going to be the terms reached by both parties to bring remedy to the circumstances that brought about the the claim at Federal Court. Yet, I want to share that we are actively looking for a place for the workers and HRC to be together. Through the models I have personally seen and those I have researched, the best solution is for the workers to gather at the same place where services and education is available so that organizing and outreach is more immediate and effective and we can certainly coordinate better to address the issues that make the neighbors uncomfortable.

Low work season, allows us to emphasize on educational programs: OSHA accreditation (Occupational Safety and Health Administration), a series on criminal law, labor and family, education on pesticides for gardeners and workshops with the National Day Laborer Organizing Network in terms of experiences from other areas, success stories and challenges faced elsewhere.

2. UPCOMING GENERAL EDUCATION PROGRAMS: ESL CLASSES STARTING ON FEBRUARY 6TH WE ARE ALSO STARTING A DAY CLASS. Jennifer Dolan Waldman together with Joan Gottesman continue to lead our volunteers in the preparation of their classes, equipping our volunteer teachers with techniques, support and recording for further evaluation. JUST RAN A SHORT WORKSHOP ON POPULAR EDUCATION AND WILL HAVE A SECOND ONE IN MARCH. Staff from OSHA, members of the community who are involved with HRC and members of other organizations participated. We work with the Paulo Freire methodology at the center and are happy to invite anyone interested to participate. We partnered with Hommocks Middle School to develop an aggressive outreach initiative through a research based program called PALMS which stands for Post Secundary Access to High Education for Latino middle schoolers. Hommocks has been one of the three schools selected nationwide to develop this program. We are learning the tools offered by this system to develop meaningful and effective approaches to reach Latino parents and promote among parents and children the importance of higher education. We are very grateful to be able to work with Adonis Calderon, de newly appointed Social Worker at Hommocks. We hope that this partnership will be effective in reaching out to those families that are isolated from the school community and also help bridge the achievement gap. We are starting a second parenting class in partnership with the Guidance Center and Family Ties of Westchester to equip parents with tools for common sense parenting and an understanding of the school system in the US. The classes take place on Saturdays at our center and provide babysitting. We are starting the third season of our Literacy Program at the Mamaroneck Public Library. This term we are aiming at 7 to 9 year old children. Sessions are lead by a Mamaroneck Avenue Teacher to equip parents with techniques to facilitate literacy and the development of critical thinking.

3. SERVICES: We have a Law Clinic which runs the last Monday of the month through Vanessa Merton Professor of Immigration and Pace University and her students. Ms Merton and her students see clients by appointment to answer

questions, assess the situation of those who attend and take a few cases pro bono. Our case manager has passed her notary exam and we will soon be able to notarize documents for our clients.

These are mere examples of some of the programs we are running to meet the needs of those who are new to the community and isolated. We are always keen to build alliances, collaborative efforts to bring quality programs and hope to continue to engage members of the community with team spirit to join efforts. Our offices are located at the Basement of St Thomas's Church on 168 W Boston Post Road, Mamaroneck, NY 10543 and our telephone for further information on our programs is (914) 835 1512 or resourcecenter@hrclm.org Mariana Boneo, Executive Director Hispanic Resource Center