¿Habla Español? La Red Cross does!

Data based on the May 2007 Census Bureau Report.

Hispanics, Latinos and the Latino community are words and phrases that are making lots of headlines lately. For example according to a recent article by US Today Newspaper, the Hispanic/Latino population will double by the year 2050. Hispanics already are the largest minority group in the US. This segment of the population is expected to double by 2050 making their share of the population be, a whopping 29%.A significant jump if you compare that, to its current standing.
The lattes numbers from the US census Bureau puts the Hispanic/ Latino population to an estimated 45.5 million or 15% of the population of the United States. These predictions of the Hispanic/Latino population doubling itself are very significant for many institutions, organizations and of course, the Red Cross.
One of the most important parts of the Red Cross mission is to reach out to their perspective communities and prepare the population for the unforeseeable and preventable disasters. That also includes the Hispanic/Latino community and the increasing importance of emergency preparedness within the Chicago Latino community.
In order to achieve this part of their mission the Red Cross of Greater Chicago is offering Disaster Preparedness seminars and classes in Spanish. See, the Red Cross like so many other organizations, agencies and corporations are realizing that for this segment of the population language is kind of a big deal.
For the Latino community language is one of the ways they retain their cultural heritage, is a way to protect their identity and embrace where they come from. That doesn’t mean that they don’t know or want to learn English but rather that they feel more comfortable discussing important issues like this, in their mother tongue.
The Red Cross is well aware of this and in order to expand its mission of help people prevent, prepare and respond to disasters they are training a mini army of Spanish-speaking and bilingual volunteers so they can come to your communities and talk about how to be ready when a disaster strikes.
The topics of these presentations are many, including among them preparedness for heat waves, fires, floods, tornados, terrorist attacks or even a pandemic flu. All these presentations can be given at your communities, churches, schools, companies, clubs or organizations- free of charge, in both Spanish and English. So why don’t take advantage of them?
There is a Hispanic/Latino saying that is well known among all the Spanish-speaking world and this is “Que Dios nos agarre confesados!” which means that you better be caught ready when the time comes. So let’s get ready, mi gente!
So if your feel that your community is not ready and you would like us to come and show you how to prepare your community for a disaster, please contact our one and only, Latina extraordinaire Dunia Villarroel VillarroelD@usa.redcross.org.

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