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Cultural Corner

 Sociedad Latina's blog about youth, culture, and opportunities in Boston's Latino community


Receta: Burritos de Batatas y Frijoles


  • 2 batatas (o ñames) grandes, peladas y cortadas en trozos
  • 1 cucharada y 1 cucharadita de aceite vegetal, divididas
  • 1/2 cebolla picada
  • 1 lata (15 onzas) de frijoles negros, escurridos y enjuagados, o 2 tazas de frijoles negros cocidos
  • 1/2 cucharadita de comino
  • sal y pimienta a gusto
  • 8 tortillas de trigo integral



Precaliente el horno a 375°F. En un tazón grande, mezcle los trozos de batata con 1 cucharada de aceite. Esparza las batatas recubiertas de aceite en una bandeja de hornear y áselos durante 20 minutos o hasta que esten suaves. Es una sartén grande, caliente una cucharadita de aceite a fuego medio alto. Añada la cebolla picada y saltee hasta que este suave. Añada los frijoles, el comino, la sal y la pimienta al gusto. Retire del fuego, añada los pedazos de batata cocido y mezcle, revolviendo con cuidado. Con una cuchara, coloque la mezcla en el centro de cada tortilla. Enrolle las tortillas y sírvalas.


Hundreds of Families Celebrate Sociedad Latina’s Annual Latino Heritage Month Kickoff

BOSTON – Thursday, September 15, 2016 – Sociedad Latina today hosted its annual Latino Heritage Month kickoff event, ¡Viva Nuestra Cultura!, featuring live music, salsa classes, art, and a youth talent show in the Mission Hill neighborhood of Boston.

Hundreds of local families, community leaders, local businesses and elected officials attended the event, located at One Brigham Circle, which also served to highlight Latino civic engagement and voter registration efforts.

“This event is about celebrating the rich mosaic of Boston’s Latino communities,” said Alex Oliver Davila, executive director of Sociedad Latina. “Latino Heritage Month is a great opportunity to bring together our talented artists and musicians, while also showcasing the next generation of Latinos who are proud of their cultural heritage.”

¡Viva Nuestra Cultura! is Sociedad Latina’s hallmark annual event that gathers youth, families, partners and community members to celebrate Latino culture and spreads the word about Sociedad’s innovative college and career readiness, community organizing, health and arts programs. 

Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz, Reps. Jeffrey Sanchez and Gloria Fox, City Councilor Annissa Essaibi-George and Boston’s Chief of Health and Human Services Felix Arroyo also attended the event.  

“It’s a pleasure to join Sociedad Latina and the entire community to celebrate Latino Heritage Month,” said Rep. Sanchez. “Events like these help display the many positive ways Latinos contribute to Boston’s arts, culture and business communities.”

Latino Heritage Month is the period from September 15 to October 15 in the United States, when people recognize the contributions of Hispanic and Latinos and celebrate the group's heritage and culture. Each year, Sociedad Latina hosts a month-long series of events featuring renowned Latino artists.

Event partners at this year’s celebration include: Berklee College of Music, Massachusetts College of Art and Design, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Sportsmen’s Tennis and Enrichment Center, and UMass Extension.

About Sociedad Latina: Sociedad Latina is a citywide organization that focuses on supporting the unmet needs of youth and families from Boston’s Latino communities. Since 1968, Sociedad has worked in partnership with youth and families to create the next generation of Latino leaders who are confident, competent, self-sustaining and proud of their cultural heritage. 



Sociedad Latina Selected as Grant Recipient of 2016 Youth Opportunity Fund to Connect Low-Income Youth in Boston to Career Opportunities




The $250,000 grant, funded by the Citi Foundation and America’s Promise Alliance, will prepare 250 Latino youth for success in college and careers

[BOSTON, MA] (August 15, 2016) –  The Citi Foundation and America’s Promise Alliance announced that Sociedad Latina, on behalf of the Latino College & Career Access Network, has been awarded a grant from the 2016 Youth Opportunity Fund, an initiative that supports programs that connect youth to opportunities that increase their employability and prepare them to compete and thrive in a 21st century economy.

Sociedad Latina is one of 12 organizations selected in 2016 to receive a one-year, $250,000 grant to prepare 250 low-income youth for the workforce through skill-building, mentoring and paid internships. This project will be carried out by the Latino College & Career Access Network, which includes East Boston Ecumenical Community Council, Hyde Square Task Force, Inquilinos Boricuas en Acción and Sociedad Latina, in partnership with the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development.

“In Boston, Latinos experience double the poverty rate and earn only 62 cents on the dollar compared to non-Latinos. They are also overrepresented in service jobs and underrepresented in managerial positions,” said Alexandra Oliver-Dávila, Executive Director of Sociedad Latina. “The Youth Opportunity Fund will enhance the Latino College & Career Access Network’s efforts to help more young Latinos gain the skills and experience they need to succeed in the 21st century workplace.”

"Congratulations to Sociedad Latina on being selected as a recipient of the Youth Opportunity Fund, an important program in the City of Boston that provides needed support and opportunities to our youth," said Mayor Martin J. Walsh. "This well-deserved recognition speaks to the important work that Sociedad Latina does in our community, engaging our Latino youth in programming and skill-building opportunities to create the next generation of leaders."

Now in its second year, the Youth Opportunity Fund is part of the Citi Foundation’s Pathways to Progress initiative, and supports organizations that empower urban youth ages 16 to 24. The Fund focuses on nonprofits in 10 of the largest U.S. cities: Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, Newark, St. Louis, San Francisco Bay Area and Washington, D.C. To date, 24 organizations have received support, reaching more than 7,000 youth.

“Since we launched the Youth Opportunity Fund, grantees have demonstrated what it takes to give young people the chance to unlock their full career and economic potential,” said Brandee McHale, president of the Citi Foundation. “We are excited to support the innovative work of this new cohort of community partners and look forward to promoting their learnings and success.”

“Students who earn a high school diploma have a greater chance of becoming employed, but without the right skills and connections, better job opportunities may be out of reach,” said John Gomperts, president & CEO of America’s Promise. “The Youth Opportunity Fund helps to even the odds by giving more young people the training and support they need to get on a path to adult success.”

To learn more about the Youth Opportunity Fund and see a full list of 2016 grantees, visit:  


About Sociedad Latina

Founded in 1968, Sociedad Latina works in partnership with youth and families to create the next generation of Latino leaders who are confident, competent, self-sustaining and proud of their cultural heritage. Operating under this mission, we have developed an innovative youth development model called Pathways to Success, which engages Latino youth over the long-term (ages 11-21) using culturally and linguistically responsive and sustaining practices. Our approach works in partnership with families and cross-sector supporters to capitalize on youth’s strengths and assets, such as strong community ties, bilingualism and high aspirations. For more information, visit

About Latino College & Career Access Network

To increase the employability of young Latinos and connect them to economic opportunity structures in Boston, four Latino-led organizations have convened the Latino College & Career Access Network - East Boston Ecumenical Community Council, Hyde Square Task Force, Inquilinos Boricuas en Acción and Sociedad Latina. All members are community-based organizations with decades of experience achieving success with Latino, Spanish-speaking and English learner youth. Our approach brings holistic services to the Boston neighborhoods where young Latinos live, work and study.

About America’s Promise Alliance

America’s Promise Alliance leads an alliance of organizations, communities and individuals dedicated to making the promise of America real for every child. As its signature effort, the GradNation campaign mobilizes Americans to increase the on-time high school graduation rate to 90 percent by 2020 and prepare young people for postsecondary enrollment and the 21st century workforce. For more information, visit

About the Citi Foundation 

The Citi Foundation works to promote economic progress and improve the lives of people in low-income communities around the world. We invest in efforts that increase financial inclusion, catalyze job opportunities for youth, and reimagine approaches to building economically vibrant cities. The Citi Foundation’s “More than Philanthropy” approach leverages the enormous expertise of Citi and its people to fulfill our mission and drive thought leadership and innovation. For more information, visit


Youth Leader Interview with Edgar

Edgar, 18, grew up in Boston in a Dominican family with strong ties to the community. Four years ago, Edgar was invited to Sociedad Latina by one of his sisters who was a Youth Leader at the time. He has been a part of this family ever since as a Youth Leader in the Health Educators en Acción program. This year, he joined our Jóvenes Latinos Pro Salud (Health Careers for Youth) program and was able to complete a capstone internship at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

When asked about his experience, Edgar expressed that coming to Sociedad Latina allowed him to “prepare for the future and stay focused on what my goals are. I learned that I can accomplish whatever I set my mind to.” He also explained that “there’s always something new going on, something new to learn, someone new to meet. It’s a great experience. You may encounter bumps in the road, but everybody here always helps you and gives their extra time to support you with your homework or anything else you might need help with.”

Edgar recently graduated from Brighton High School. His top choice for college was Wentworth Institute of Technology (WIT) because he has always been interested in architecture and knows that their program is one of the best. With the support of his ALAS coach, Edgar applied for and was accepted to WIT’s architecture program and received a substantial financial aid and scholarship package. And after excelling in his internship, he was also offered a permanent position at Beth Israel that will allow him to work part-time to pay for school. He later wishes to get a Master’s degree, as well.


Summer Programs and Events

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