Dear Friends & Supporters,
Thank you to all who joined us last Tuesday, December 6th at our Annual Making Change Happen Breakfast, generously hosted by WilmerHale. We were humbled by our supporters who filled the room and surrounded us with palpable positive energy. For those who could not make it, please enjoy photos from the event HERE.
This year’s breakfast theme was ¡P’alante!: The Next 25 Years. We celebrated our 25th anniversary and looked forward to the future. We introduced our new Executive Director, Celina Miranda, who shared her story of emigrating from El Salvador at 11 years old, her experience in philanthropy, and her commitment to youth work. Her story reflects many of our youths’ stories, and they can see themselves in her. We couldn’t have asked for a better role model, and we are grateful for her leadership.
This year we provided jobs for 120 youth leaders and engaged more than 1,200 community members. 100% of our seniors graduated high school and enrolled in college. Our youth are change-makers in their communities and active advocates for Afro-Latin arts. At the breakfast, we honored our 2016 Emerging Leader, Anny Sanchez, an HSTF alumna who talked about growing up in the Latin Quarter and how culturally relevant arts led her to personal transformation. We thank her for sharing her story.
We were pleased to present this year’s Inspiring Leader Award to Anita Walker, Executive Director of the Massachusetts Cultural Council (MCC), a longtime Hyde Square Task Force funder, partner, and advocate. By supporting the arts, Anita and the MCC have provided resources for organizations to make meaningful change, often by making the arts accessible to under-resourced communities. We couldn’t be prouder to have Anita and the MCC as our partners.
As we look toward next year (and the next 25!), we are excited to welcome you into our newly renovated Youth Community Development Center, slated to open in January. We’re ready to introduce youth to their new space where they will grow into stronger leaders, artists, and champions of the Latin Quarter. With your support, we’ll continue to assist youth in developing self-worth and the ability to advocate for themselves and others. They will change their own lives and build a better future for their community and the city of Boston.
President, HSTF Board of Directors
Chair, Host Committee