Every year, El Pueblo hosts several health-related events which work to bring low-cost services and information to the immigrant community.
Community Health Initiatives
El Pueblo works to provide health information in Spanish to the Latinx populations within its communities. Additionally, El Pueblo works with local health providers to connect the immigrant community with low-cost and language-appropriate health services.
In a new partnership, El Pueblo will work to bring information about breast cancer awareness to the Latinx population. El Pueblo will host information events as well as promote helpful information through its social media platforms.
Food Awarness in the Latinx Community
We are excited about the latest project from our Mujeres Unidas group! These ladies are working on a LatinX recipe book with stories to contextualize each dish.
This project is being done with the help from Dr. Karina Zelaya. She is an Assistant Professor of Spanish in the Department of Classical & Modern Languages and Literatures and Affiliated Faculty in the African American Studies Program at Mississippi State University.
The recipe book is supported by aid granted by MS INBRE through its competitive Community Engaged Awards, which El Pueblo received this year along with three other organizations in the State of Mississippi.
According to Dr. Zelaya, the main goal is to edit the recipe book. The long-term goal is to initiate conversations about nutrition and health practices, and to encourage the women to think about women’s health from a holistic viewpoint, nutrition, physical, mental, and emotional.
Mujeres Unidas has about a year to complete the book. Dr. Zelaya guides the instruction with the help of audio-visual material—a combination of community-made video clips and scientific, academic documentaries made for a general audience. Every week, we focus on a particular aspect and/or ingredient of food as it relates to LatinX cultures. The group then reflects upon what they have heard, learned from the videos, but more importantly the women open up about their beliefs about food and share ideas about how they can make small changes to their diet without sacrificing their familiar flavors, their identity. These conversations give way to knowing more about each other and establishing greater connections and strengthening support for one another, which can prove to be a challenge at times because being LatinX does not mean they are a homogeneous group. In this way, the “food club,” as the group informally calls their workshops, educate women about their nutrition and it builds on information to have a deeper understanding about themselves and as a culture — recognizing the richness of their practices. In this case, they focus on what they eat, what they harvest at home and in their yards or even in pots when living in reduced spaces. These conversations create a sense of pride and validate their practices as well as provide an awareness that empowers them.
Dr. Zelaya said it is her hope that projects like this will help scientists develop evidence-based approaches to create and implement programs that are reachable and sustainable for communities like the LatinX community in rural areas, like much of Mississippi. As a Salvadoran/Latina immigrant and educator and as a daughter of parents who sacrificed everything, including their own wellbeing, for the opportunity to provide a healthy and hopeful future for their children, Dr. Zelaya said she feels it is her responsibility to educate and to bring awareness about the positive contribution the LatinX communities have made and continue to make in our region and our state. Be it working in the fields, in the poultry industry, staying at home, cooking and taking their delicious food to construction sites, or selling through an informal market, following the practices of work food deliveries in their native countries, the women of Mujeres Unidas make great contributions to the places where their families settle.