El Centro’s mission is to strengthen families and improve the lives of Latinos and others through educational, social and economic opportunities.
We strive to help Latino immigrants integrate into broader, mainstream society, while valuing their native language and culture. Indicators of effective integration include higher levels of language proficiency, health, education, financial soundness, workforce marketability/sustainability, residential neighborhood, political participation, and social interaction.
The process of integration can be overwhelming to immigrants. To be sure, efforts to adapt to a new culture often bring about fear and confusion, as well as the need to make inconvenient or uncomfortable lifestyle adjustments. To address the needs of our community, El Centro staff is offering a four-part series of “Combo Classes.” The courses include—but are not limited to—the following key areas:
- Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)
- Health and Nutrition
- Voter Registration
- Financial Education
- Taxes and ITINs
- Workers’ Rights
Thirty five community members attended the first session in June in Olathe, where the Latino population continues to increase. Responses from the participants were overwhelmingly positive as indicated on a post-course evaluation. Another gauge of success was the level of enthusiasm and interaction that students exhibited with the instructor and with each other. In July, the course was presented in Wyandotte County, which resulted in similar positive responses.
El Centro plans to offer the classes each month through the end of the year. For more information, please call us at 913-677-0100.