2016: Our Favorite Things

As 2016 ends, we wanted to reflect on some of our favorite moments from this year. 


#6 - Latino Network Ballet Folklorico Featured in the Rose Festival! 

Our youth dance group, Corazones Algres, was invited to participate in this Portland tradition. Youth rode on the float and danced along the route to the music of Edna Vazquez and her mariachis. Zumba Instructor Gisela Contreras led parents in Zumba along the way as well. 

See more of our Rose Festival photos on our Facebook!


#5 - Juntos Aprendemos Expands and is Now in 10 Schools! 

From starting in one school - Rigler Elementary - 16 years ago, Juntos Aprendemos sure has grown! As of this fall, they are serving:

  • 250 children AND their parents/caregivers
  • In 10 Schools
  • Across 4 School Districts 

Read more about Juntos Aprendemos’ impact


#4  Latino Leaders elected statewide & Measure 98 victory!

Latino Network has always been an advocacy organization and we continue to work to change policies and practices to ensure our communities are thriving.

This year, we celebrated the election of Latino & indigenous leaders statewide who will represent our communities, including a few Unid@s for Oregon graduates:

  • Jessica Vega Pederson elected as Multnomah County Commissioner
  • Melinda Veliz elected as Woodburn City Councilor, Ward I
  • Teresa Alonso Leon elected as State Representative
  • Diego Hernandez elected as State Representative
  • Tawna Sanchez elected as State Representative (and the first Native American woman to serve in the Oregon Legislature!)

We also celebrated a victory for ballot measures Measure 98 and Yes for Affordable Homes! And this month, we celebrated the victory of Open and  Accountable Elections passed by City Council to match small dollar campaign donations.

Carmen Rubio attends a Yes on 98 rally with co-petitioners Toya Fink, Oregon Stand for Children Executive Director, and former Governor Ted Kulongoski.

Carmen Rubio attends a Yes on 98 rally with co-petitioners Toya Fink, Oregon Stand for Children Executive Director, and former Governor Ted Kulongoski.

Read more about our advocacy victories here!


#3 - 100% of Escalera seniors graduate! And our school-based programs expand! 

Congratulations to every one of our high school seniors in Escalera college prep program. They all worked so hard and successfully graduated in June! Today, they are all enrolled in college or apprenticeship programs, working toward their goals. 

And with the help of Multnomah County Schools Uniting Neighborhood (SUN) Contract, we expanded our programs to serve more Latino youth & families. 

See our full list of schools here.


#2 - Latino Network Awarded Far West Regional Affiliate of the Year

Read more about the reward we received at this year's NCLR conference in Orlando!


#1 ...

We could not do our work with all of you - as volunteers, donors, advocates, champions, and more! Thank you for working with us to make our Latino communities stronger and healthier. 

United we move forward to achieve our goals in 2017.  



Latino Network Day @ Chipotle!

It's coming soon - your favorite burrito place is partnering with Latino Network for a fantastic day of making a difference in our community!

Eat at ANY Chipotle in Oregon or SW Washington and mention Latino Network on Tuesday, Oct. 25 and 50% of the profits go towards our programs!

This is your chance to make a difference in the lives of students, families, and communities while eating DELICIOUS food! Order catering, take your friends, or go on a date...

Whatever you do, mention us to the cashier and you'll be apart of this amazing effort to help Latinos throughout Oregon!

Date: Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Time: ALL DAY!

Location: ANY Chipotle in Oregon or SW Washington 


Visit our Facebook event page and RSVP!

Noche Bella Exceeds Fundraising Goals!

Wow! Thank you so much to all of our sponsors, supporters, and friends who gathered on September 23rd to help us celebrate the amazing Latino communities in Portland and across Oregon. 

Together, we raised $205,000!! Funds will ensure Latino youth & families are empowered to be agents of change in their schools, communities, and across Oregon. 

Whether it is parents of an incoming kindergartener learning to advocate, high school students finding their voice, or community members learning how to run for office, we know our youth and families are strong, resilient, and courageous. We look forward to working with them this year to create change. 

Ballet Folklórico's  Corazones Alegres  were one of the talented groups that provided entertainment at Noche Bella. 

Ballet Folklórico's Corazones Alegres were one of the talented groups that provided entertainment at Noche Bella. 

More than 400 people gathered at Castaway for the evening of Latin American cuisine and music. Dinner was catered by Mahayuel Catering/Tamale Boy who served up delicious tamales, salmon in a mole rosa sauce, and an ice cream dessert for all to enjoy. Entertainment was provided by Ballet Folklorico youth dance group Corazones Alegres, mariachi singer Edna Vazquez, and band Dina y los Rumbos. 

Executive Director Carmen Rubio shared news of the organization’s growth – Latino Network is now more than 100 staff members with 34 school-based sites serving more than 3,600 youth and families! 

She also commented on the toxic rhetoric present this year for Latinos, and many communities of color, and commended our elected officials in Portland who are standing up for the right thing. 

Executive Director Carmen Rubio spoke of the positive growth and transformation of the Latino community at Noche Bella. 

Executive Director Carmen Rubio spoke of the positive growth and transformation of the Latino community at Noche Bella. 

“More than ever, we must invest in and support courageous political thought leaders that, despite this toxicity, stand up and do the right thing, denounce hateful rhetoric, support our beautiful and diverse communities, and are always, always reminded of whom they are elected to serve.” 

Aguila Award honoree, Judge Darleen Ortega echoed Carmen’s sentiments. Judge Ortega was honored for her incredible work with the Latino community, building a more equitable Oregon through her personal and professional actions. 

“In an atmosphere when Latinos are problematized and treated as the criminal element as problems, I know that is such a lie. I live in that world and I know different,” Judge Ortega said. “The courage, resiliency and leadership within the Latino community is beautiful.”

Thank you to our emcee Oscar Montemayor, Unidos Cohort II alumni! Huge thank yous to our presenting sponsor Portland Development Commissioner and gold sponsor Oregon Lottery, as well as all of our other sponsors. See you next year! 

Umpqua Bank Awards Impact Grant to Latino Network

Grant Fuels Juntos Aprendemos Expansion

“If more kids had this opportunity, we would save many headaches when our children grow up. We would even save money. The jails would close.” –Juntos Aprendemos parent participant

Latino Network is excited to announce we are one of four recipients of the 2016 Umpqua Bank Charitable Foundation Community Impact Grant!

The award is for three years, $135,000 to expand Juntos Aprendemos early childhood education program.

Because of this investment, Juntos Aprendemos will be able to expand to three new schools in the next three years, and 150 more Latino children and parents will be able to access this critical early learning opportunity.

“For more than fifteen years, Juntos Aprendemos has successfully been preparing kids and families to succeed in kindergarten,” said Executive Director Carmen Rubio. “We are so grateful to Umpqua Bank Charitable Foundation for recognizing the program’s value to our Latino communities, and funding this expansion to ensure our Latino children are ready for kindergarten.” Read the 15-year retrospective report

In addition to the financial investment, this grant will also provide additional partnership benefits between Latino Network and Umpqua Bank. We look forward to partnering on volunteer opportunities and other activities to strengthen our communities together.

“As a community bank, Umpqua Bank is committed to investing in the communities we serve,” said Nicole Stein, Vice President Community Responsibility at Umpqua Bank. “We believe we have an obligation to give back in meaningful ways, particularly to help make a difference in the lives of children and families.”

Umpqua Bank Charitable Foundation also funded three other non-profits with Impact Grants: United Way of the Wine Country in Santa Rosa, CA; Salem-Keizer Education Foundation in Salem, OR; and Baker City School District in Baker City, OR.

About Juntos Aprendemos

For more than fifteen years, Juntos Aprendemos [Together We Learn] has been a community-based program working successfully with Latino children and parents. Juntos Aprendemos is a model early childhood education program designed to engage 3-5 year olds and their parents to address the opportunity gaps and disparities in school readiness faced by Spanish-speaking children in our community. Read more about the program