Today I got some exciting news: I got accepted to an alternative spring break in San Juan, Texas working with La Union del Pueblo Entero (LUPE), a non-profit community organization founded by the same man who started United Farm Workers movement, César Chávez.
During that week, we’ll be helping out in the local community made up of many recent immigrants, which will be a welcome opportunity to speak Spanish (!!!) and learn about Mexican culture. I’ve missed Spanish so much and every time I overhear a native speaker my heart skips a beat and I feel a little more at home.
A little more information on LUPE…
From my understanding, you build a community of conscience by responding to people’s needs, investing in self-development, and transforming the community and its members through advocacy.
If you think about it, those are all fundamental strategies of community-building both online and off: You respond to each others’ needs; you try to better and strengthen yourself, and encourage others to do the same; you advocate for the community so it will grow. How can a community not flourish around principles like that? And it’s clearly working, since LUPE has grown in power and popularity since its founding twenty years ago.
I’m SO excited to get down there and learn from the people who apply these strategies to their lives in order to keep their community strong and successful.
What are some sources of leadership and community building you’ve taken inspiration from?