Why it’s important to support

  • 1) The Trump administration’s threat to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program will affect countless women in our state, and by extension, their families, all who just want a chance to contribute positively to their communities.

  • 2) Because of this policy shift, many of the Latina women with whom I work are suffering from high rates of depression and anxiety, not knowing what the future holds for their children and the years of investment they’ve made in them to succeed.

  • 3) We are witnessing many families separated by deportation, and the devastating holes it is leaving in our schools, workplaces, CBOs, community centers, places of worship, and hearts. We refuse to sit by while this happens.

  • 4) Our community, like the nation, is awakening to the fact that women of color have been silenced for far too long. We want to continue to work to ensure that our voices are not only not silenced, but amplified, and to celebrate our indigenous and African roots as part of our political resistance and inspiration.

  • The El “Batey” award gets its name from the Taino Indians, the indigenous peoples of the Caribbean. The Tainos used this word “batey” to describe any square in front of the home of their cacique/chief, where they celebrated their public activities. Each town had one, and they were considered sacred places where magic/religious ceremonies were practiced. We like to think of our own communities as “bateyes” where we can honor the hard work of our women. As you know, Boston is a very diverse city, yet still segregated in terms of access to high-quality education, employment, housing, health care, etc. In fact, the Boston Globe just ran a Spotlight series on race, including alarming facts from the 2015 “The Color of Wealth in Boston” report by the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, Duke University, and the New School. According to the report, the median net worth for non-immigrant African-American households in the Greater Boston region is $8 (sadly, not a typo!).

  • For Dominican Latinas in Boston – many of whom are black—their median net worth is zero. The good news is that there are women in this city who show the kind of fortitude, persistence, and love for community to change those numbers. Our beautiful city has many “bateyes” scattered throughout our neighborhoods, and for that reason, ALMA-Soul wants to celebrate this year by recognizing women who are sacrificing to make a positive difference in our neighborhoods. ALMA-Soul is a grassroots, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization, whose mission is to develop professionalism, leadership and entrepreneurial skills for socially and financially disadvantaged women to help achieve self-sufficiency and participation in broad civic discourse and community affairs. This is accomplished through, but not limited to, education, training, workshops, and networking opportunities in Greater Boston.

  • We serve all women, but focus on Latinas and other women of color. It would be an honor and a privilege for these women to hear your inspirational words and to see that they still have the support of leaders like you during this troubling time in our country’s history.