Jóvenes Sin Fronteras: Latino Youth Take Action for Social Justice & Well-Being GCP-09-01

Michele A. Kelley, Meghan Benson, Mayra Estrella and Joann Lugardone

The views expressed in this report represent those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the Great Cities Institute or the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Latino adolescents in the U.S. endure health and social inequities such that they are less likely to complete high school and less likely to have access to health care than their non-Latino white counterparts. These disparities can compromise chances for health and social advancement over the life course. The purpose of this paper is to present a participatory evaluation using an empowerment framework to demonstrate how a local, urban cultural center for youth fosters (1) Latino Unity and positive youth development among participants; (2) youth led action and organizational empowerment, (3) positive community connectedness and community-building and (4) broader societal connectedness and social justice.

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