October 2019
In this issue: 2019 Gala Recap, ESL Begins, LaAmistad is Hiring, Lifting Latino Voices, Former Student Returns
A Celebration of Heroes Pays Off for Atlanta's Latino Students and Families
The 2019 LaAmistad Annual Gala lived up to the hype, as some of our city's most dedicated champions came out to celebrate the heroes of our community. Hailing from a variety of sectors, honorees Barbarella Díaz of Díaz Foods, Jerry González of GALEO, and Eduardo Martínez of UPS each echoed the critical nature of LaAmistad's mission, and its impact for Latino students and families.

For LaAmistad, the evening served as an opportunity to recognize the ways in which these incredible people affect substantive change for the community we serve, and to enlist the support of like-minded companies, organizations, and philanthropists in helping to improve quality of life for the Latino community of our state.

242 total attendees helped us raise over $145K in support of the students and families we serve. This would not have been possible without the incredible outpouring of support we received from our guests, sponsors, and volunteers. We'd like to thank everyone who made this an evening to remember. Can't wait to do it all again next year!
ESL Classes Underway NOW!
Another transformative session of LaAmistad ESL is underway now! It's not too late for you or a loved one to sign up and reap the benefits of improved English fluency and conversational confidence. Check out the link below to find a location in your area, and get on the path to a bright and fulfilling future.
LaAmistad is Hiring!
Are you interested in the fulfilling world of nonprofit work? Check out some of LaAmistad's open positions and internships below!
Lifting Latino Voices
With the help of allies like 2019 Gala honoree Jerry González and the Georgia Association of Elected Officials, LaAmistad works tirelessly to improve access to educational supports for Latino students in Georgia. Our students' ultimate goal remains at the forefront of our programming, a college degree. "From 1996 to 2016, the number of Hispanic students enrolled in colleges and universities in the United States doubled from 8.8 million to 17.9 million." While this trend is encouraging, we have much more work to do to achieve our vision: that Latino students and families achieve life-long self-sufficiency.

Improving quality of life for Latino students and families is LaAmistad's main objective. It's why we offer institutional supports like access to community resources, financial planning seminars, and assistance navigating the school system. We've made great strides, but in order for improvements to continue, it is critical for the Latino community of Georgia to force lawmakers to take notice of the needs and challenges facing the Latino community today. LaAmistad is proud to team up with other local Latino organizations to help give our community a brighter future. Click below to learn more!
LaAmistad's 2019 Holiday Drive
Opts for New Books Rather Than New Toys
Remember your favorite book from childhood? We all have one. The Little Engine That Could, Green Eggs and Ham, and Clifford the Big Red Dog were all popular choices. Not only did classic titles like these provide us with hours of educational entertainment, they made reading fun! This year, as we prepare for the holidays and the celebrations that accompany them, LaAmistad Afterschool is calling on YOU to show a student how much fun it can be to get lost in great a book. LaAmistad's 2019 Holiday Book Drive is looking for NEW books to be given to students as gifts this December. Help a student fall in love with reading this year!
Success Spotlight: Former Student, Current Georgia Bulldog, Shares Experience in LaAmistad Afterschool
During some of his most formative years, Joshua Duarte attended LaAmistad Afterschool where he received academic support and mentorship from volunteers invested in his success. Now studying at the University of Georgia, Joshua made his triumphant return to the LaAmistad family last Saturday as he spoke on behalf of the organization, it's benefits, and the ways in which LaAmistad positively impacted his life.

"As a kid, I was very shy," Joshua said as he took the podium at the 2019 Annual Gala, "LaAmistad provided me with a family that has stayed with me for over 8 years. We were all taught the same aspects and geared towards making the right decisions and lifting each other as we climb. With that, I am pleased to state that the individuals who became my friend all have been able to go about their lives and achieve goals that none of us would have imagined. This wouldn’t have been possible without the guidance from the hardworking volunteers and staff."

More than just help with his elementary school assignments, LaAmistad Afterschool laid the groundwork for what it meant to work hard and never lose sight of one's goals. The guidance he received from an early age gave Joshua a leg up on many of his classmates as his education continued.

"Fast-forward into high school, after having left the program, I began to use everything I learned to put myself ahead of everyone else," Joshua beamed, "I achieved many things that my younger, shier self wouldn’t have imagined. I was a member of multiple clubs. I was in ROTC, I was on the honor roll all 4 years, I received a Marine Corps award for my leadership and hard work, I was given the seal of bi-literacy by the state of Georgia. When it came to my senior year and the time came to apply to college, it was a walk in the park."

Joshua's inspiring story is one we hope to replicate for every student in LaAmistad Afterschool. It is our firmly held belief that with a little bit of academic and moral support from an early age, each and every one of our students can achieve their dreams. Thank you, Joshua, for sharing your story.
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