A community of Latinx youth & families in Chapel Hill, North Carolina
What We Do
The Mariposas curriculum and sessions always address six social emotional themes regardless of the topic we’re focusing on: determination, self-discipline, curiosity, activism, tenacity and personal safety.
Tradition, family narratives, social, racial and political issues of the Latinx diaspora are included in everything we do.
Intersectional issues of gender, ethnicity, race and legal status are also directly discussed.
Issues of racial, immigrant, gender, LGBTQ and economic justice are used to address socio-emotional health and democratic engagement.
Mariposas meets weekly in the evenings. While our 45 youth meet, over 35 adults meet separately in an adjacent space. However, we often come together for collaborative projects. We believe that the sharing of multigenerational wisdom is essential for everyone’s personal growth and liberation.
Mariposas relies on volunteer Latinx educators. They write differentiated curriculum for youth and for adults, and they facilitate and coordinate sessions and community events.
Mariposas parents are experts! We don’t believe in engaging parents in sessions designed to educate or assimilate. We believe Latinx parents are full of expertise and wisdom, and we build from there. Our parent sessions are focused on facilitating a space where knowledge, wisdom and solidarity are exchanged.
Mariposas has met with pretty amazing people- Justice Sonia Sotomayor, activist Janet Murguía, journalist Soledad O’Brien, singer Ricky Martin, author Julia Alvarez, and with the first Latina US Senator Catherine Cortez Masto. Every one of these meetings is preceeded by at least 6 weeks of mandatory educational sessions targeted to the experiences of these role models.
As an extension of the curriculum, Mariposas has traveled to Washington DC, Atlanta, New York City and Philadelphia to critically engage with people and locations that are essential to our growth as activists and as liberated people.
Mariposas has been supported 100% by family fundraising, and through small grants from the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Public School Foundation, and from Teaching Tolerance. Mariposas doesn’t receive funding from any other sources.
The Mariposas book is coming! We are publishing a bilingual children’s picture book called “El Regalo de Lenna” this summer. The allegorical story will help adults tackle conversations with children about power, privilege, justice and resistance.