A huge thanks to all our donors, who contributed to the success of our Annual Fundraising Breakfast, Buenos Días from the Heart. We continue to work on reaching our fundraising goal of $100,000, and it is not too late to donate.  Every contribution is significant to not only help maintain and strengthen our current programs, but to also create new programs to address the growing needs of Latino youth in the Richmond area. With your help, the Sacred Heart Center can continue to create a thriving and inclusive Richmond that is welcoming to all.

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If you couldn’t come to our breakfast, here’s what you missed:
On Friday October 21, Sacred Heart Center opened its doors early in the morning to host the 4TH Annual Fundraising Breakfast, Buenos Días from the Heart. Over 170 people were greeted by the smell of fresh baked pan dulce and hot tamales.

Oscar Contreras from Radio Poder 1380 AM introduced a video that describes how we work with partners, including the Valentine Museum, the Virginia Health Care Foundation, the Mexican Consulate, Bainbridge Food Pantry, the Bon Secours Care-A-Van, and the City of Richmond Office of Multicultural Affairs. Over the last year, through our community hub work, together we helped more than 6,400 Latinos access vital services that are improving quality of life. Hear more about what our partners say here in our video.

While sipping fresh brewed coffee, we heard powerful stories directly from our students. Ricardo Olea couldn’t pay for his studies in Mexico and moved to the United States two years ago, seeking better opportunities for himself and his eight siblings. “I am almost finished with my GED,” he explained. “Now I am taking an English class. The Center is very good. They give us the tools that we need to support our learning. My dream is to learn English well and to go to the university to continue my studies and to finish.”

Federico Xol earned his GED diploma with the support of our GED prep classes, and also recently graduated from our Latino Leadership Program. “Because of these programs, I have been able to expand my vision of this community. I have gone to events that I would not have known about. The events made me feel included in this community.”
Carmen O’Brien has recently become a U.S. citizen since taking citizenship classes with us. “I feel that having these programs available in our community benefits many people and allows them to thrive and succeed to reach their dreams – as I have mine,” she said. “I believe that the Sacred Heart Center helps many people’s dreams come true, thanks to your support and dedication. I feel that the people that work here are a family, my family, and many people like me are experiencing this connection.”
Ana Torres addressed the large group together with her young daughter Allison. Ana, one of our ESL students shared “The classes have helped me a lot to go to the store, to the doctor, and to communicate with my child’s school.” She said, “Allison’s experience was even bigger. Before coming to the Center, she had not had much contact with other children, and she did not know her letters or colors. Once she started coming here, she made friends and would count the days until she would come to the Center. She is now in Head Start in Chesterfield and she is doing great! I think Pasitos Exitosos here at the Center helped her make the transition into preschool.”
These are the best testimonies of how your contribution is positively impacting the lives of each member of our community. See more from all of these stories here.
Thank you to all of you that helped us make the breakfast a success and that are helping us to continue building an empowered community.

We also want to sincerely thank all our sponsors: Metro Design Studios, Wallner Graphic Design, La Sabrosita Bakery, Mexico Restaurant, Wegmans, V.F Lanasa Inc, El Caporal, Taqueria Panchito, and WBTK 1380 Radio Poder.