Interim Inc. will be observing National Hispanic Heritage Month from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15 by celebrating the histories, cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America.
Interim employs a staff rich with cultural diversity to reflect the community it serves. Nearly 50% of staff and 40% of clients are of Hispanic/Latino heritage. The peer-to-peer culture, which is the foundation that Interim is built on, uses training, education and lived experience to foster the trust and compassion required to make connections with those in need.
Priscilla Apilado, who works at Interim’s crisis residential program Manzanita House, noted, “I have been a part of the Interim team for over 10 years. In that time, I have found that the agency has always had a very diverse community of staff and clients. Interim continuously offers training on cultural diversity and requires cultural competency training hours from staff. A Diversity & Inclusiveness committee was also created within our agency to come up with new and inventive ideas to keep us all well informed about understanding others with disabilities and different cultural backgrounds.”
Hispanic Heritage Month originally started with one week of commemoration when it was first introduced by Congressman George E. Brown in June 1968. With the civil rights movement, the need to recognize the contributions of the Latin community gained traction in the 1960s. Awareness of the multicultural groups living in the U.S. was also gradually growing.
Hispanic Americans have been integral to the prosperity of the U.S. Their contributions to the nation are immeasurable, and they embody the best of American values. The Hispanic-American community has left an indelible mark on the U.S. culture and economy.
WHY HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH IS IMPORTANT
- Strong impact on America:
Hispanic influences are tightly woven into the fabric of American life —music, food, art, cinema, politics, literature, and so much more.
- Around one-fifth of the U.S. population is Hispanic:
The state with the largest Hispanic and Latino population overall is California with over 14 million.
For more information on National Hispanic Heritage Month, go to https://hispanicheritagemonth.gov.