We took an evening recently to catch up with 6 of the 7 Promotores — Josefina, Florinda, Maria, Maricela, Martha, and Minerva, our brave and dedicated leaders. Every week until the end of January we will feature one woman, highlighting their dreams, reflections, and goals as we welcome a new year and a new decade.
This week we feature Florinda, Esperanza Court Resident, Mother, and Promotora!
On being a Promotora:
Mi parte favorita de ser una Promotora es aprender a ser servicial porque es reconfortante sentir que puedes ayudar a otras personas. El ser Promotora si me ha hecho ser mejor como madre, porque aprende uno a darle confianza a nuestros hijos en realizar cualquier meta que se propongan. También a ser mejor como persona, pues podemos ayudar a otros que lo necesitan. Del programa de Promotores he aprendido a tener confianza en mi misma y que tambien me gustaria aprender como saber hablarle a las personas para que sientan confianza y puedan acercarse sin temor.
My favorite part of being a Promotora is learning to be helpful because it is comforting to feel that you can help other people. Being a Promotora has made me better as a mother because we learn to give our children confidence in accomplishing any goal they set. Also to be better as a person, because we can help others who need it. From the Promotoras program, I have learned to have confidence in myself and that I would also like to learn how to speak to people so that they feel confident and can approach them without fear.
Since Becoming a Promotora:
Pienso que si he cambiado un poco desde que me convertí en Promotora, me falta mucho claro pero ahora miro el entorno diferente, siento que puedo hacer mucho ayudando a la comunidad
I think that if I have changed a little since I became a Promotora. I need a lot of clarity but now I look at my environment differently and I feel I can do a lot by helping the community
When Looking in the Mirror…
Al verme en el espejo miro a una persona que debe darlo todo, tanto en la familia como a la comunidad que la rodea
Seeing myself in the mirror I see a person who must give everything, both to my family and the surrounding community
On Life’s Greatest Challenge…
El mayor desafío en mi vida fue cruzar la frontera trayendo en brazo a mi hija Lizeth, pues tenía un año de edad y embarazado de Miriam, mi segunda hija
The biggest challenge in my life was crossing the border alone, bringing my 1-year old daughter Lizeth in my arm, and pregnant with Miriam, my second daughter
About the Promotores Program
Following the hiring of Promotores Leadership Development Coordinator, Anabel Hernandez-Mejia, the Promotores Program was developed and launched in the Spring of 2019 to increase individual skills, community building, overall understanding of and access to services, and to create a sense of advocacy within the wider community regarding issues that affect our communities of predominantly immigrant, low-income farmworkers and families.
A prerequisite 5-day training with the Ford Family Foundation finalized the recruitment, followed by a 3-day Promotores Initiation Training, leading to 7 Promotores formally entering the Program, all women from 6 of our Woodburn properties, eligible to receive stipends and skill-building opportunities to help them and their neighbors achieve their goals. To date, all Promotores have participated in between 10-20 events each, ranging from trainings in confidence and public speaking, affordable housing, health access, food and nutrition, educational access, and more.
Promotores now meet regularly to discuss their goals and the needs within the community, and frequently take on leadership roles at FHDC and community events to ensure families get their basic needs met. Promotores practice and learn effective communication skills which help them motivate and identify and advocate for the needs within the community.