Latinitas is a non-profit organization that enables young Latinas to achieve personal and academic success through media and technology outreach thereby addressing the critical state of Latina girls today. While Latina girls ages 12 to 17 are the largest group of minority girls in the country, they are more likely than their non-Hispanic peers to face the four most serious threats to achieving success: depression, pregnancy, substance abuse and becoming a high school drop out. The solution lies in empowering these young Latinas, strengthening their confidence and expanding their opportunities. With a variety of enriching experiences, Latinitas discover their voice and develop media skills while building a solid foundation for their future.
- Provide a creative outlet for girls to express themselves, learn about their culture and discover their voice.
- Help girls stay in school and be prepared for higher education.
- Foster the career exploration and S.T.E.M. exposure of girls to be prepared to enter the workforce of the 21st century.
- Connect girls with positive role models and mentors.
- Strengthen girls’ confidence, self-esteem and cultural identity.
- Connect girls with media and technology tools and access.
- Promote leadership development, goal setting, social justice advocacy & community service among girls.
WHY DID WE START LATINITAS?
- Latinitas need a medium that meets their needs and interests and speaks their language
- Latinitas want to learn about their culture and history
- Latinitas should be exposed to Latina role models
- Latinitas need to hear the message that they are important and that they can succeed
- Latinitas face challenges that must be addressedLatinitas deserve to see their experiences reflected honestly and accurately.
WHY LATINA YOUTH?
While young Latinas are the largest group of minority girls and represent the fastest growing youth population, alarming trends show they have the highest high school dropout rate, attempted suicide rate and teen pregnancy rate.
- 1 out of every 7 Latina teens, or 14 %, attempts suicide. Hispanic girls lead girls nationwide in rates of suicide attempts
(Source: Center for Disease Control)
- 41 % of Latinas in the U.S. do not graduate from high school on time with a diploma.
(Source: Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund)
- 51% of Latinas get pregnant at least once before age 20—compared to the national average of 35%.
(Source: National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy)
As the largest minority population of girls in our country and as the fastest growing youth population in the nation, it is vital for us to invest in the future of young Latinas. By empowering Latina students, we are empowering America.