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Centro Tyrone Guzman offers opportunities to UNIDOS

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Ida Pountney
Members of South’s UNIDOS meet after school. Senior Yojanly Gonzalez said UNIDOS is “a group of people...who like to explore other cultures… when someone [says] Latino/a America… they think oh it's just one culture, but no it's it's a bunch of different cultures.”

Ida Poutney

Members of South’s UNIDOS meet after school. Senior Yojanly Gonzalez said UNIDOS is “a group of people...who like to explore other cultures… when someone [says] Latino/a America… they think oh it's just one culture, but no it's it's a bunch of different cultures.”

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The word “UNIDOS” means ‘united’ in the Spanish language. This name represents how these students have come together from various places to be united as Latinx people. UNIDOS has been a group at South for 15 years. UNIDOS is an after-school club that meets every Thursday in room 239.

Yojanly Gonzalez, a senior and vice president of UNIDOS described the organization as: “A group of people…who like to explore other cultures… when someone [says] Latino/a America… they think ‘oh it’s just one culture,’ but no it’s it’s a bunch of different cultures.”

“Everyone can join!” said Gonzalez. “People think that it’s only for Latin America but it’s not, anyone can join.”

UNIDOS serves as a place for Latinx youth to come together and engage with their culture, something often missing in a typical classroom. By meeting, students from across Central and South America work to form a deep and strong community.

Typically, UNIDOS focuses on having two cultural days: an educational day and a community day. Some days they will have a guest person come from outside the South community. One of their guests was a speaker who came from Centro Tyrone Guzman. The speaker provided information on opportunities for youth in UNIDOS to get involved.

In this talk, they presented an opportunities to get involved with their organizations, which works to engage Latinx in their community. According to their website, Centro Tyrone Guzman is “building a vibrant, diverse and inclusive Latino/a community that belongs and contributes to the social and economic vitality of Minnesota.”

Centro Tyrone Guzman has many ways that students can involved with, one being become an Adult Literacy Tutor if you are fluent in Spanish. This allows students to aid in tutoring adults in the community. According to the organization’s website, “This is a fantastic way to make a difference in the community.” Centro also extends tutoring to youth in the community, allowing students to give back.

Centro Tyrone Guzman also tries to directly help Minneapolis youth in schools. The Be @ School program “builds a strong network of support to promote the academic success of elementary and middle school youth.” Some of the focuses of the program are to increase attendance and connect the youth, families, and communities to increase support. In 2014 the attendance rate went up 70% for the past years. [email protected]  also looks to have a long term effect on students. Another goal of the program is “[email protected] provides culturally centered programming that supports the development of a strong identity in youth.” They offer opportunities over summer break as well to help students throughout the year.

Centro Tyrone Guzman has a wide variety of programs that are to help youth get prepared to go out in the real world. One of them is called Youth Social Intrapreneurship, a group for young Latinx students looking learn how to navigate the business world. They learn how to run a business and right now they’re already running a business. Last semester they learned how to make a business plan that they were passionate about and use those business plans in the real world. One of their focuses was making salsa that was then sold at the Farmer’s Market in Minneapolis.

Centro Tyrone Guzman’s role is unique in Minneapolis. It is one of the few resources working on engaging and including Latinx youth in the city with their communities. Through their work many students gain a deeper sense of connection and meaning as well as increased help in the school system.

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About the Writer
Ida Pountney, Staff Writer

Freshman Ida Pountney is starting her first year on the Southerner staff. Recommended to her by someone at orientation, Pountney hopes that being on the...

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Centro Tyrone Guzman offers opportunities to UNIDOS