NCLR Honors Erie House as 2015 Midwest Affiliate of the Year
July 22, 2015 | Chicago, IL
Erie Neighborhood House executive director Celena Roldán-Moreno accepted the National Council of La Raza (NCLR) Midwest Affiliate of the Year award on behalf of her colleagues at the Latino organization’s annual conference in Kansas City, Mo., earlier this month. The honor was accompanied by a $5,000 award to be applied toward general operations.
“We couldn’t do this valuable work without the support of partners like NCLR,” Roldán-Moreno told conference attendees upon receiving the award, referencing the more than 5,000 participants—a majority of whom are Latino—served by Erie House each year.
This wasn’t the first accolade for Erie House at the NCLR annual conference. Just last year, NCLR bestowed the Family Strengthening Award on Proyecto Cuídate, an Erie House program designed to prevent violence at home and build stronger, healthier families and communities.
The regional affiliate award, however, seemed to carry additional value this year. It served as a welcome reprieve from the stress of the ongoing Illinois budget impasse as well as a reminder of the solidarity shared with other NCLR members seeking to empower the Latino community.
“All of us are here in Kansas City because we share a commitment to la raza—to the inspiring Latino individuals and families who make our communities stronger and more vibrant,” said Roldán-Moreno at the conference, “and we need an organization like NCLR to ensure our collective voice is heard.”
NCLR is recognized as the largest national Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organization in the United States and strives to improve opportunities for Hispanic Americans. Formed in the civil rights era to represent Mexican American concerns, it serves as a Latino equivalent to the African American community’s NAACP.
The annual conference featured a vast array of workshops and networking opportunities aimed at building stronger Hispanic American communities. Keynote speakers included Democratic presidential hopefuls former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-Vermont), and former Maryland governor Martin O’Malley.
NCLR plans to host next year’s annual conference in Orlando, Florida, on July 23–26, 2016. For more information, please visit www.nclr.org.