Center for Community Learning, Inc.
Communities Served

East Little Havana neighborhood is located in the middle of Miami, Florida, the poorest among cities in the United States with populations exceeding 250,000.  The Miami River, 27th Avenue on the west, and SW 8th Street on the south define the roughly triangular-shaped area on its north and east.  Little Havana is a densely populated community characterized by a high crime rate, blighted housing neglected by absentee landlords, overcrowded and inadequate schools, and limited recreational and employment opportunities for youth and adults.  Over 92% of Little Havana’s population is Hispanic; approximately 93% of residents speak Spanish while 55% speak little or no English.  Historically, the community has served as a point of entry for immigrants from the Caribbean, Central and South America  The area’s population is widely considered transient due to the instability of their living conditions.  This makes it difficult to establish ongoing relationships between families and service providers. Despite their diverse national origins and their day-to-day hardships, most Little Havana residents share cultural, religious and linguistic ties as well as a strong commitment to family. 

Indianapolis, IN: The Annie E. Casey Foundation (AECF) had launched in Indianapolis several family- and neighborhood-strengthening programs.  AECF was instrumental in introducing the Natural Helpers Program and its developer, Myriam Monsalve-Serna., M.S., Ed., LMFT, executive director of the Center for Community Learning in Miami, Florida, to those working with Mrs. Peterson from the Office of the Mayor and the Greater Indianapolis Progress Committee.  A small team from Indianapolis was invited by the AECF to learn about this successful, proven model to help immigrants integrate faster into the community, thereby contributing at a greater level to the city’s economic, social, civic, and cultural vibrancy. More details.

Seattle, WA: A pilot project in conjunction with Consejo Counseling & Referral Service, Project Look, and the Annie E. Casey Foundation, working towards building natural support/professional partnerships within an agency which serves the Latino community. "Capacidad" is a Spanish word which implies empowering people to build their own innate capacities. The Capacidad Project will train natural supporters and professionals to work together to enhance the community's strengths, serving Latino clients in the most culturally competent manner.   South King County: low income, high-crime housing complex. The Vintage Park Apartments is one of the largest apartment complexes in Washington State. Located along Burien's main stretch of roadway, this sprawling complex has more than 500 apartments. A majority of the residents here are recent Mexican immigrants who speak only Spanish, as well as recent indigenous Mexican immigrants known as Tarascans, who speak a language which dates back to the time of the Aztecs. Just minutes from SeaTac International airport, the Windsor Heights Apartments house a vibrant community that speaks more than 50 languages. With nearly 350 apartments, Windsor Heights encircles many different people, families, nationalities, and cultures within its boundaries.

Tampa, FL: Under the umbrella of the Tampa Hillsborough Integrated Network for Kids (THINK) project, The EQUIPO: Puentes Parents and ChangeMaker’s of Neighborhoods United groups have been busy with numerous training activities. Designed to bring together formal and informal helpers of children with serious emotional disturbances and their families, the EQUIPO/ChangeMakers are working to create avenues to encourage neighborhood-based care. One of the avenues is relying on informal/natural helpers – people living within the neighborhood who naturally provide emotional and moral support to other families in need. Since they are in a better position to establish links with families, these informal helpers work closely with formal service providers.  More details.

Center for Community Learning Inc.
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