Hispanic American Heritage Celebration

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September 14 - October 4, 2010

Exhibit: Our Ways: The History and Culture of Mexicans in Oregon

Nuestras Costumbres: Historia y Cultura de los Mexicanos en Oregon

Description: This bilingual exhibit explores the history, work, community celebrations, arts and culture of the Mexican population in Oregon (people of Mexican Heritage born in USA or in Mexico) from the earliest arrivals to the most recent. After a brief historical overview, it addresses the impact of Mexicans in many fields from agricultural production to social and political participation. It presents the traditions, celebrations and diversity, both linguistic and cultural, within the population.


September 27, 2010

Workshop: How to use popular education as a tool for culturally-specific health promotion in Latino communities

Facilitators: Noelle Wiggins, M.S.P.H., Ed.D, manager, Community Capacitation Center, Multnomah County Health Department; Teresa Rios, C.H.W., capacitation coordinator, Community Capacitation Center, Multnomah County Health Department

Description: Popular education is a highly effective strategy for sharing information, building skills, and developing leadership. Closely associated with the literacy instruction methods developed by Brazilian Paulo Freire, popular education has been widely used for health promotion and in many other fields. Popular education is based on the idea that, whether we are farm workers, doctors, waitresses or lawyers, we all know a lot as a result of our life experience. Therefore, educators should always start with what people already know and build on it. In a health promotion context, popular education helps people analyze the root causes of ill health and create healthier and more just communities.

The Community Capacitation Center of the Multnomah County Health Department uses popular education as the principle philosophy and methodology for achieving our missions of supporting communities to identify and address their own most pressing health issues. In this workshop, presenters will focus on how to use popular education to improve health and address health inequities in the Latino community.

Facilitator Biographies: Noelle Wiggins, M.S.P.H., Ed.D., is the founder and manager of the Community Capacitation Center (CCC) at the Multnomah County Health Department in Portland, Oregon. From 1990-1995, Wiggins served as the director of La Familia Sana (The Healthy Family), a Community Health Worker (CHW) program based in Hood River, Oregon. From 1986-1990, she trained and supported CHWs in a rural, conflictive area of El Salvador. Wiggins served as associate director of the National Community Health Advisor Study and is a past president of the Oregon Public Health Association. Wiggins holds a B.A. in history from Yale University, an M.S.P.H. in health and social behavior from the Harvard School of Public Health, and an Ed.D. in curriculum and instruction from Portland State University. Her dissertation is titled, “La Palabra es Salud: A comparative study of the effectiveness of popular education vs. traditional education for enhancing skills and knowledge and increasing empowerment among parish-based Community Health Workers.”

Teresa Rios is the capacitation coordinator for the Multnomah County Health Department’s Community Capacitation Center. From 1988-1999, Rios worked as a community health worker/promotora with the El Niño Sano/La Familia Sana/La Comunidad Sana programs in Hood River, Oregon. She has presented at over 50 state and national conferences and is a well-known trainer and advocate for CHWs/promotores/as. Rios served on the Advisory Council of the National Community Health Advisor Study and is a former chair of the Community Health Worker Special Primary Interest Group (SPIG) of the American Public Health Association (APHA). Rios is also a certified NIA instructor. NIA is an expressive fitness and awareness program that blends movements and concepts from a variety of cultures.



September 27-28, 2010

Fitness Workshop: Zumba Master Class

Instructor: Neylana Neylana Feijo Bezerra, fitness instructor, March Wellness

Description: If you thrill dancing to salsa, cumbia, and merengue moves then you won't want to miss this workshop! This high-energy movement experience will leave you feeling energized, inspired and ready to hit the Portland “salsa,” night scene. No dance experience is necessary, just a willingness to groove to the music and have fun. The Zumba® program fuses hypnotic Latin rhythms and easy-to-follow moves to create a one-of-a-kind fitness program that will blow you away. Zumba® fanatics achieve long-term benefits while experiencing an absolute blast in one exciting hour of calorie-burning, body-energizing, awe-inspiring movements meant to engage and captivate for life! The routines feature interval training sessions where fast and slow rhythms and resistance training are combined to tone and sculpt your body while burning fat. Add some Latin flavor and international zest into the mix and you've got a Zumba® class!

Instructor Biography: Neylana Feijo Bezerra, mother of two, was born in Santiago, Chile, and has been in the U.S. since 1997. She found her passion for fitness after giving birth to her first daughter in 2000. In 2002, she got her first nationally recognized fitness certification through AFAA, and since then, she has been teaching a variety of fitness formats including Zumba. Raised in South America, Bezerra found herself surrounded by a variety of Latin music and dance, which make is really easy for her to teach a very exciting, fun, and full energy Zumba class. Her background also includes ballet and gymnastics.


September 28, 2010

Event: Latino Resource Fair and Community Organization Exhibit

Description: OHSU employees and students will have an opportunity to learn more about the organizations that serve Latino communities in Oregon and get resources and information of the various services available for our Latino patients and their families.  

  • Conexiones
  • Educate Ya
  • El Programa Hispano
  • Hacienda Community Development
  • Hispanic Metropolitan Chamber
  • OHSU Diabetes Center
  • OHSU Poison Center
  • Oregon Commission of Hispanic Affairs
  • Portland VOZ
  • Tierra Educational Center

September 29, 2010

Presentation: Latino experience and achievements in Oregon

Presenter: Gale Castillo, M.A., president, Hispanic Metropolitan Chamber

Description: Gale Castillo will provide an overview of the growing Latino population in the US and in Oregon. She will also discuss the important work performed by the Hispanic Metropolitan Chamber to support the economic advancement of the Latino population in Oregon and SW Washington.

Presenter Biography: Gale Castillo, M.A. is the president and is a founding member of the Hispanic Metropolitan Chamber that was established in 1994. Its mission is to work with all members of the community to increase the economic advancement of Hispanic-owned businesses. Castillo is also the co-owner of Cascade Centers, Inc., one of the largest privately held companies that provides Employee Assistance Program (EAP) services and staff development throughout the United States. Castillo's current community involvements include: Leaders Roundtable (Portland, OR), Portland Trail Blazers Business Advisory Board, American Leadership Forum, Class IV Fellow and former Board member. Castillo received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Linfield College and a Master’s degree from Portland State University. Castillo has been recognized by a variety of groups for her community service. In 2009 Castillo was selected as one of 22 Latinas in the United States to participate in the National Hispana Leadership Institute, and she received the “Coretta Scott King Drum Major Award”. In 2004, Ms. Castillo was selected by the US Small Business Administration as “Oregon’s 2004 Minority Small Business Advocate of the Year”, and was also recognized by the Business Journal as one of the top “Woman Executives of the Year for Non-profit organizations”. In 2002, the Oregon Business Magazine named Ms. Castillo as one of “Fifty to Follow” in Oregon.


September 30, 2010

Presentation: Participatory process to engage Latino families with disabilities in improving the health and well-being of their community

Presenter: Claudia Maria Vargas, Ph.D., M.S., associate professor of pediatrics, Child Development & Rehabilitation Center, OHSU

Description: Healthcare decisions often have been the purview of practitioners in hospitals settings, disconnected from community challenges or cultural strengths. The CDC, HRSA, and Institute of Medicine underscore the need to engage vulnerable and minority communities in identifying their health needs as well as taking action toward their solution. In some cases, efforts at engagement have not truly been two-way exchanges. This presentation considers a case study of a predominantly Latino community in Oregon which, through authentic participatory approaches, has pursued a multi-year process in which families with children with disabilities have established effective partnerships with government officials, community providers, and clinical trainees resulting in changes in policy and practice. Latino families have also offered lessons for health care providers on the challenges they encounter in clinical and hospital settings, and often when they go home, which significantly affect their health and well-being.

Presenter Biography: Claudia Maria Vargas, Ph.D., M.S., is associate professor of pediatrics at Child Development & Rehabilitation Center (CDRC), OHSU and associate professor at the Hatfield School of Government, Portland State University. Her teaching experience spans over 35 years including internationally on comparative health care systems to advance understanding of the health needs of refugees and immigrants. She has been a consultant with the United Nations. She publishes in a number of literatures, sustainable development, refugee service delivery, disability and health, complementary therapies for survivors of tortures. In the field of disabilities, the focus of her work is on interdisciplinary, family-centered care, cultural competence, and community engagement.


October 1, 2010

Presentation: Swimming upstream to improve Latino health: Barriers and opportunities

Presenter: Marie Napolitano, Ph.D., F.N.P., director, Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP) Program, associate professor in the School of Nursing, University of Portland

Description: Improving the health of Latino populations in the United States will necessitate multiple approaches beyond the current individualistic and familial approaches used by the health care system and social organizations. The current health status of Latinos demands an integrated, national plan which incorporates best practices and voices of all parties involved in Latino health, including the recipients themselves. The current climate of cost containment and the focus on increasing access to health services have tended to narrow perspectives for many organizations. However, the time is right for creative and effective approaches to be implemented. This interactive presentation will include an upstream focus using the Public Health Intervention Wheel for envisioning the possibilities for creating multiple, integrated upstream approaches. The audience will participate in discussion regarding barriers encountered in the upstream swim and opportunities for expanding their contributions in creating new approaches.

Presenter Biography: Marie Napolitano, Ph.D., F.N.P., is director of the Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP) Program and associate professor in the School of Nursing. She joined the faculty at the University of Portland in July 2007. Napolitano has been involved with nurse practitioner (NP) education and administration for over twenty years. She has been a Fulbright program specialist for nurse practitioner education in Thailand and has taught in NP programs in Thailand, Taiwan and Canada. She has practiced as a family nurse practitioner in primary care for 30 years and has worked in Mexico and Costa Rica. A major area of Napolitano’s clinical practice and research has been in migrant farm worker healthcare. She is chair-elect for the Migrant Clinicians’ Network Board.