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Cultural Initiative

Valley Mountain Regional Center’s Cultural Initiative is a movement meant to expand our responsiveness and affinity for our diverse sectors of our developmental disabilities community within our valley and mountain regions.  We achieve this by reaching out and participating in the public square whenever and wherever it’s engaged, helping to build power and agency among groups who feel they have none, and strengthening the advocacy of individuals with developmental disabilities. 

The Cultural Corner, by VMRC Cultural Specialist Carlos Hernandez

05/06/19

Cinco de Mayo

On 5 de Mayo my colleagues and I attended El Concilio’s 5 de Mayo event at Weber point in Stockton.   As we set up for the event I couldn’t help thinking if agencies and guests in attendance recognized the reason that Cinco de Mayo was being celebrated. The true meaning of Cinco de Mayo is a remembrance of a victory by Mexican troops in La Batalla de Puebla (The Battle of Puebla). This battle was more than 50 years after the actual independence of Mexico from Spanish rule. This battle, however, is the celebration of the victory over the French. This battle signifies the resilience of the Mexican people, and the will to never give up.

Growing up in Bakersfield, CA, I lived in a predominantly Hispanic neighborhood. Even though it wasn’t Mexico, I was surrounded by the Hispanic culture, and was raised to respect and celebrate my roots.   Being at this event brought back lots of childhood memories. Witnessing people of all different cultures dancing and smiling, waving and wrapping themselves in the “bandera Mexicana” brought a sense of pride and honor in that we are all one. We at VMRC spoke to 325 people and had a blast seeing these people come up to our table and thank VMRC for the great effort and results families in the community have had.

I would like to thank my partners Employment Specialist, Enos Edmerson Jr, Assistant to the Director, Doug Bonnet, and Senior Service Coordinator, Renee Williams, for helping us outreach.

The Cultural Specialist

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