It’s amazing what relationships you can build through social media; a few years ago I was added to Facebook Group Latinas Empowering Latinas. With being big on empowering and supporting other women myself, founder Dolores (“Loli”) Alvarez Castilla and I hit it off immediately. With the LEL group now being close to 25,000 members, Loli felt it was time to take Latina pride to the next level. Being that there is not an official National Latina Day, Loli felt inspired by her many group members to create a day of celebration for all Latinas and with August 20th, 2015 being the 3rd year anniversary of the LEL group, I can’t imagine a better day to celebrate myself. It’s been a real pleasure seeing how grand this group has grown and interviewing Loli.
Don’t forget to use the hashtag #NationalLatinaDay on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and all of your social media channels! Let’s spread the word! Happy Latinas Day!
About National Latina Day
National Latina Day was created to set aside a day for all Latina women to show their pride. To be recognized as the strong women we are, and the influence we have in society. It is a day to honor all Latina women. Latina women are gaining prominence in the U.S. and are becoming a strong influence on the mainstream economy. Latinas are the growth engine of the U.S. female population and are expected to represent 30 percent of the total female population by 2060. It is time to be noticed and recognized. On August 20, we will be wearing red to represent all Latina women.
Why the color red?
The color red was chosen red for the group and National Latina Day because red, as attention grabbing as it is, is also a warm, positive, and associated with physical needs and will to survive. Loli also mentioned that red signifies action, energy and speed, confidence, power, passion, excitement, and strength. In honor of the National Latina Day, don’t forget to send the Latinas in your life a red rose to remind her how special she is to you.
Latinas Empowering Latinas is a group to unite, encourage, support, inform, and most of all empower Latinas around the world. LEL features Latina artists, business owners, and educators sharing the latest tips on social media, business, education, fashion, beauty, recipes, fitness, and many other various topics that bring Latina women together. Many women in the group have come together to encourage, inspire, and motivate each as well. With being a place to vent and seek advice, LEL has been the foundation for many wonderful friendships and continues to bring Latinas together; it’s definitely a place of unity, growth, positivity, and spirituality.
Interview with Founder Dolores (“Loli”) Alvarez Castilla
Me: What really inspired you to create LEL?
Loli: Latina Empowering Latinas started August 20, 2012; the inspiration to create LEL was simple. I found myself giving advice to many of my social media friends on Facebook. (To my surprise, I had 1000 members join in 24 hours!) Though we hadn’t met yet, I simply thought that there should be a group in which we could come together to discuss different topics going on in our lives where we could give each other support in a positive way without any negativity or bashing of one another, a place to cheer each other on about anything. Whether a bad relationship, seeking a job or just plain need to cry and let things out without being judged. I also thought this would be a great place to discuss and share topics such as beauty secrets, fashion, health, and fitness. Being that I am a Latina and many of my Facebook friends are too, I thought the name Latinas Empowering Latinas would be a great fit. Now being close to our 3 year anniversary, we are at 17,856 members and climbing every day with an average of 20 to 50 members wanting to join daily.
Me: What are your Goals for LEL?
Loli: With LEL growing rapidly and many fellow Latinas wanting to help others like I do, my vision became clearer as I realized how encouraging, inspiring, supportive, and empowering the members were. What started out as a simple Facebook group is now helping me achieve a lifelong goal of creating a nonprofit organization that can address the needs of the Latina community. With education being a huge focus, another goal is to have scholarships in place for women who are struggling financially to continue their education. I not only reach other Latinas scholastically, but in many other different ways that can help insure the health of their bodies and souls. Latina women are quickly becoming a large and influential segment of the U.S. population. Currently, 14.4 million Latinas in the United States and these numbers are expected to increase since Latinos are the fastest-growing minority in the country. Latinas are more likely to enroll in college than their male counterparts, and they are also increasingly choosing careers in politics. However, they face many challenges. For example, 53 percent of Latinas lived in low-income households in 2007, and in that same year over a third lacked health insurance. LEL empowerment conventions are definitely in the future. With so many business owners in the group, many can act as advocates and steer those wanting to enter the world of entrepreneurship in the right direction to climb the later of success to its highest. I also would like to set up a resource center where we can meet the needs of Latina women. Resources in whatever the need is, such as housing, shelter, medical services, etc. Latinas can have a powerful and lasting impact to create and advance an agenda to improve their health care, education, and living standards.
Me: What is your personal message to other Latinas on National Latina Day?
Loli: My message is simple. It is time for us to stand up and be counted for all that we are and all of our accomplishments. It is time to change the mindset of people that we are just loud women with attitudes. Let’s be proud of who we are as individuals, our heritage and especially of our culture. Let’s all us Latina women unite as one and show the world what a proud group of women we are. Latinas can have a powerful and lasting impact to create and advance an agenda to improve their health care, education, and living standards.