NEW WINDSOR – Latinos Unidos of the Hudson Valley hosted their 14th Annual Hispanic Heritage Cultural Celebration on Friday, November 1 at Anthony’s Pier 9. The well attended event, drew a mix of community members who gathered in support of the mission of Latinos Unidos.
This year the organization honored Gisela Gomez and the Newburgh Armory Unity Center with the De Hoy Award. Latinos Unidos President Peter Gonzalez was proud to announce both.
“The Hoy Award is being presented tonight for only the second time, and is being given to people who have made a difference in their community,” Gonzalez said.
Gomez, who currently works for M&T Bank, has led her workplace, whose mission is to promote diversity within and assist her organization in becoming a valuable partner to the community through volunteer and sponsorship opportunities. She also led the local Race to Aid Campaign to help Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria. Gomez is also one of the co-founders of Latinos in Business Succeeding Together.
“This is really about those who support me and inspire me. Latinos Unidos inspires me,” Gomez said in accepting the award. She spoke of the importance of what Latinos Unidos of the Hudson Valley does, saying, “The services you provide are essential to the Latino community…you are greatly needed.”
The second award was given to the Newburgh Armory Unity Center, spearheaded by William Kaplan. It is a place where community members of all ages may come together for education, athletic and civic opportunities, in order to engage with others and advance the community. Since 2010 the Newburgh Armory has been changing young lives.
Dr. Karen Eberle-McCarthy, who serves as Vice President of Latinos Unidos, spoke about the mission and gave an overview of what they have been doing for the past year. “We dare to be the voice of an otherwise voiceless group,” said Eberle-McCarthy. “We help high school students find scholarship money for college; we offer free citizenship test prep classes and English as a Second Language classes. Our goal is get prepared citizens.”
Other highlights for the year included: collaborating with a pharmacy to provide free flu shots (November 16 at the Armory); nutrition classes; collaborating with Latinos in Business Succeeding Together for the second Latino business expo; and actively registering new voters.
To learn more about Latinos Unidos of the Hudson Valley, visit www.LatinosUnidosHV.org.