Latinx Technology and Community Center of Genesee County celebrated the opening of their second floor and playground installation with a ribbon cutting ceremony on Friday, June 15th.
The community center is dedicated to enhancing the dignity and quality of life for Genesee County Latinx community members and beyond. LTCC is a nonprofit organization that provides language services, educational programs, and assists in job employment for the Latinx community.
The renovation of what was once a bank building has created over 2,000 square feet on the second floor. The space was designed for dance, music and language classes, office space rental, a state-of-the-art boardroom, and the office of the Executive Director, Asa Zuccaro.
Most of the classes are taught by outside nonprofits or small businesses who need a space that is safe and culturally comfortable. The project for the second floor was made possible by a $575,000 grant provided by the C.S. Mott Foundation. Jennifer Acree, program officer at the C.S. Mott Foundation, spoke at the ceremony on how community centers create change, “We did it because we know how important community centers are, what you see is more opportunities.”
The community playground was completed with assistance from Consumers Energy, which donated $80,000, in addition to other charitable local organizations.
Steve Wolbert is the CEO and co- founder of Social Impact Philanthropy and Investing (SIPI), a grassroots nonprofit that has worked with LTCC for several years. “I am more than proud to be here,” said Wolbert. “I am honored.” Wolbert commended the work of Zucarro and the LTCC board, on their hard work of growing the annual budget of $3,600 in 2018 to a $2 million budget for 2023.
In attendance was Flint Major Sheldon Neeley who has been a strong supporter of Latinx Technology and Community Center since the inception in 2018. “This represents a lighthouse of hope for those families that can come to a place to seek out resources and feel comfortable in,” said Neeley. He said he believes offering opportunities to expand the horizon for residents will only increase the quality of life locally and statewide.
Approximately 1,200 people have received services from LTCC in the last quarter. The organization specializes in providing education classes to students of all grade school ages but has expanded into providing resources to adults looking for employment. In the last 30 days, they have assisted in the direct employment of over 30 Genesee County residents.
Zuccaro says it is the people who fuel him to keep aiming higher. “Here at the Center we aim to raise the standard of what is acceptable in serving communities of color.” He encourages those who have not been to Latinx Technology and Community Center to be curious, to explore, and to learn about them.
Latinx Technology and Community Center is located on 2101 Lewis St in Flint, MI. To learn more about Latinx Technology and Community Center visit their website at LatinxFlint.org
Christiana (Guerrero) Malacara is a 4th generation Mexican American who is native to the Saginaw area. She is a news reporter, marketing director and writer. She studied Fine arts at the Gwen Frostic School of Fine Art at Western Michigan University and has a passion for sharing good news. In 2023 she opened Third Eye Marketing a digital marketing LLC. Malacara wishes to bring awareness on how the Latino community contributes state wide. She does this by writing to share stories of greatness. Outside of work, she volunteers with local Latino nonprofits and enjoys attending Detroit Tigers games or walks around Belle Isle’s botanical garden with her family.