Neighbors, Friends and Delaware Leaders Join the Party for Fiesta Latina

Relationships are key to the success of any organization, and Maria Matos, president and CEO of the Latin American Community Center (LACC) in Wilmington, Delaware has forged lasting partnerships on every level of local government.

Delaware’s governor, lieutenant governor, both U.S. senators, Wilmington’s mayor and several city councilmembers showed their support of LACC by joining a large crowd of friends and neighbors on September 9, 2022, for Fiesta Latina, an annual celebration to honor National Hispanic Heritage Month. In his remarks, Governor John Carney noted that no one has done more for the community when it comes to COVID-19 than Maria Matos, and it was clear the crowd agreed.

LACC has been an essential resource in the Hilltop neighborhood of Wilmington for over 50 years. The organization provides early childhood education, family support services, financial empowerment and health promotion. The CDC Foundation supports LACC’s ConeXiones program, which launched in September 2020 and provides education about COVID-19 and links community members to important health resources. Community members rely on LACC for the most up to date, accurate health information, and LACC has provided more than 500 COVID-19 vaccines and boosters in the last year.

Trusted LACC partner organization Chesapeake Regional RX Pharmacy was on site during Fiesta Latina to provide vaccines to the crowd, and LACC surprised the pharmacy with an award for the work they’ve done during the pandemic to ensure that their community has access to vaccines.

Hispanic heritage and pride were in full display as Jarabe Mixteco folk dancers in brightly colored costumes performed. They were followed by LACC staff member Juan Hernández who played traditional Mexican guitar music. For lunch, the LACC staff prepared recipes from their home countries to share, each food tray marked with the corresponding country flag. With dishes from Mexico, Ecuador, Peru, the Dominican Republic and many more, there was a sense among the crowd of gathering around a collective family table.

Fiesta Latina was an extension of the way LACC cares for the health and well-being of its neighborhood. The sense of community was strong as people came together to improve their health, catch up with old friends and enjoy the celebration.

Enjoy more photos and read more about LACC’s Fiesta Latina in this blog written by Caitlyn Gudmundsen MPH, MDiv., a program officer for the CDC Foundation.

This project is supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award totaling $22,724,994 with 100 percent funded by CDC/HHS. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by CDC/HHS, or the U.S. Government.

Governor John Carney speaks at a podium

A group of Hispanic women stands with food they prepared for the festivalA Hispanic woman sits and gets her vaccination

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