Casa Latina Programs
Casa Latina’s programs serve some of our community’s most vulnerable families, helping them become economically self-sufficient. Our programs are responsive, participant-driven and effective, ensuring that Latino families are able to build the long-term economic and social assets they need to live, work, support their families, and contribute to the broader community.
Our Employment Program trains and organizes immigrant day laborers in order to develop employable skills, increase wages and improve working conditions. In 2012, 7,206 temporary day labor and domestic jobs were dispatched (a 48% increase over 2011) at an average wage of $14.70 per hour. 66 men and women obtained permanent jobs through connections made at Casa Latina.
Our Education Program offers a variety of classes and workshops including English language (ESL), computer and financial literacy, green gardening and green cleaning, moving, and home healthcare. Additional workshops on worker rights and workplace health and safety are provided, including outreach to day laborers at 14 Home Depot stores. In 2012, 641 workers were trained on job safety and skills, including workplace safety, green gardening and green cleaning, and more. 135 adults attended 12 or more hours of ESL classes, enabling them to communicate more effectively with employers and neighbors.
Our Leadership Development Programs provide leadership opportunities at all levels of our organization to prepare day laborers and domestic workers to become leaders in our organization and the community. One of our core programs,The Worker Defense Committee, supports those who have been cheated out of their wages by employers outside of Casa Latina to support each other to discuss their rights and how to recover lost wages.
Recent Successes and Current Challenges
As of January 2013, Casa Latina is operating programs out of our newly constructed facility, built to serve the Latino immigrant community in Seattle. The 3-story, 6,000 square foot facility is built to Silver LEED standards, and includes a Hiring Hall/Day Worker Center (twice the size of the previous facility) and three multi-use rooms for classes, meetings, and community gatherings. The building also has the infrastructure for a commercial kitchen, elevator, and storefront/retail space which will be completed when additional funds are raised.
Our new building provides adequate space for our current programs of casual labor dispatch, leadership development, education, and wage claim. With increased space, we are now able to offer expanded job skills trainings and English language education, computer and financial literacy classes, and other workshops. The new facility will allow us to continue to provide innovative and integrated programs to meet evolving needs of those we serve over many years to come. Upon completion of the kitchen and storefront, we will also be able to generate rental income and to establish additional training programs in the catering industry.
Operating out of our new facility, Casa Latina can now provide an even stronger support system and a home away from home for Latino immigrants, a place where they feel welcomed and can establish supportive relationships with other immigrants and native-born residents, increasing their potential to support themselves, their families, their friends, and their community.
Although the new building provides opportunities for increasing class sizes and engaging the community, it requires us to increase revenue in response to this growth and to future needs. Your contribution will help us continue to provide accessible job opportunities for new immigrants and critical job training and language skills programs to those we serve.