Initially established in 2005, the Center for Latino Community Health, Evaluation, and Leadership Training—a partnership between the National Council of La Raza and Cal State Long Beach—has seen such a surge in support and popularity that they inaugurated their first downtown location, the CSULB Centro Salud es Cultura.
The Centro is a natural progression for the Center, which has seen its staff grow from two to 80 in eight years. The Centro will largely focus on providing programs that emphasize health and community through a variety of projects funded by the US Department of Agriculture, the US Department of Education, the National Institute of Health, and other organizations.
"Our journey to create the Centro represents a path towards health and educational equity that reinforces the rich attributes of Latino cultures in the creation of effective community wellness strategies," said Centro Director Britt Rios-Ellis. "The goal is to create opportunities for health, educational, and cultural promotion programming aimed at improving the lives of underserved Latinos."
Part of those opportunities include already established projects for the Centro, such as Sanos y Fuertes (Healthy and Strong), a program that allows 35 bilingual/bicultural, first generation graduate fellows to study and help prevent Latino childhood obesity. Other projects include fellowships for those researching health disparities and increasing Latino engagement in STEM degrees and doctorate programs.
On a community level, the Centro will provide nutrition workshops, Zumba classes, homework and college prep courses for LBUSD students, and an overall celebration of Latino culture.
Centro Salud es Cultura is located at 1205 Pine Avenue, Suite 102 and is open Monday, Tuesday, and Friday from 9AM to 7PM; Wednesday and Thursday from 9AM to 4PM; and Saturday from 11AM to 2PM. For more information, call 562-261-8370 or visit www.csulb.edu/centers/latinohealth.