Upon attending an event at La Casa de la Raza just last week, I walked away with a profound appreciation for the community space, as well as for its dedicated staff and administration.
At this event, New Orleans poet and educator Kalamu ya Salaam asked us to think about other community centers we have been a part of. I had to admit to the group that La Casa is the only community center I have ever known. Growing up in East L.A. there weren’t any centers close enough to my neighborhood for me to attend.
Since beginning my doctoral studies at UCSB in 2009, La Casa has been a place where I meet people engaged in an array of activities that build empowering social bonds between diverse members of Santa Barbara. It has been my experience to find committed people at La Casa, facilitating meaningful educational, cultural, and health programs that benefit many people.
In the face of recent events, I have become more inspired than ever to stand with La Casa. I want to reciprocate with the center some of the wonderful support it has given me through the years as I’ve worked toward my doctorate in the Department of Sociology with Emphasis in Black Studies. You can count on me to continue to be a staunch supporter of La Casa and its promising impact on the community.