Jennifer Sánchez 1
Jennifer fell in love with the Brazilian art of Capoeira, but never imagined that it would give her a husband, her child, and a mission for the rest of her life. She and her husband created the organization called ABADA-Capoeira Bronx (ACBX) through which they create capoeira arts programs in the Kingsbridge section of the Bronx, NY. Students take classes free or at low cost, and learn to build and play hand-made instruments, history, language, acrobatics, dance, self-defense etc. She dreams with achieving full nonprofit status to be able to expand her program to schools.
Lizette Ritz 2
Lizette and her family sponsor a school/orphanage that helps 600 children in the Dominican Republic. They also orchestrate an annual gift drive of over 4,000 gifts and have created a national networking group to support social causes. For the past four years, she has managed a local community garden in the Bronx where 100 percent of all food grown is donated locally.
Luz Elena del Valle 3
Luz Elena donates her time and passion, and became the representative of the María Luisa de Moreno International Fundation in her community. The organization focuses on collaborating with governmental services and other non-profit agencies that cater to the immigrant community regardless of their country of origin. They offer support through social programs that will give immigrants access to higher education.
María Elena Díaz Sánchez 5
Every year Maria Elena finances a Christmas dinner for 200 homeless children in the Dominican Republic and sends them clothes and shoes. She dreams with being able to properly create a fundation that can help them regularly.
Marisol González 6
Marisol is an award-winning producer who has dedicated her free time and savings to the documentary Children Behind the Wall, which tells the story of homeless kids in the Mexican city of Tijuana, who have been forced into drugs and prostitution. She dreams of finishing her project to educate the world about the plight of these children.
Tania Luviano 7
Economic hardships led his award-winner journalist to create the video blog or Vlog Latina Mom TV. Now Tania wants to do more: a full show on the Internet where Latinas can express themselves and help each other. Using real stories from the Latino community, experts will advice those families depending on their situation. She also hopes to start a nonprofit organization to help Latina Moms achieve their goals, with mentors, guidance, scholarships, and many other tools.
Patricia Gracia 8
After creating a very successful advertising agency, Tania wanted to help others achieve their dreams in these hard economic times, so she created a not-for-profit organization named Power Woman Business Center, which has one mission: to help women create business and create more and more jobs. She wants to expand her organization into developing programs that target Latino families and will focus on education, the power of a united family, and anti-violence.
Sherise Martínez 9
Sharise works as a therapist focused on substance abuse. Her main focus is to promote abstinence from drugs and alcohol, and to promote positive social activities and rebuilding the family dynamic. But she dreams with starting a weekend drop-in center for at risk teen girls in the community who need a safe space, referrals to resource assistance, and classes on parenting, safe sex, independent living skills and eductional/vocational preparation.
Violeta Galagarza 11
Violeta is a professional dancer, but her career path has not taken her--as it could have--to the best states of the world. Instead she choose to fuse her love for dance with her concern for Latino youth and founded KR3Ts. For more than 20 years, her organization has provided free dance classes and support programs to young people in the community and beyond, as a positive alternative to negative social pressures and gang violence. Students not only learn how to dance, but acquire the discipline, time management, and leadership skills necessary to succeed in any career.
Monica Olivera 12
When she realized that her school district could not provide her kids with the education they deserve, Monica began homeschooling them and created MommyMaestra.com, where she provide tips, resources, activities, and other opportunities for parents who homeschool their children, and parents looking to expand --or reinforce--the concepts their children are learning in a traditional school setting. Through this site, she has created a community where Latino parents can ask each other questions to find solutions to education-related issues.
Vashti Acosta 13
As the Head of School at Amber Charter School in East Harlem, N.Y.C., Vashti impacts the lives of more than 400 students daily. Under her watchful eye, her students achieve their education at the highest levels. This year, she convened the Latino Charter Leaders Roundtable, a group of Latino educators that lead charter schools. Her goal is to expand this roundtable to a national level. She also wants to write a book to help Hispanic parents to get more involved in their children education.
María Nimia González 14
Her children are adult now, but she keeps inspiring children and young people with her church called Nido de águilas (The Eagles Nest), where she inspires kids to stay in school and become solid adults who will hopefully become the leaders of the Latino community in the future.