Each year, the United States observes National Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 to October 15. It’s a time to recognize the cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America.
According to The Library of Congress, the recognition began as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson in 1968. President Ronald Reagan expanded the observance into a month-long celebration in 1988.
The observation begins the 15th of September, because the date marks the anniversary of independence for Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days just a bit later, on the 16th and 18th, respectively. Hispanic Heritage Month concludes shortly after Columbus Day or Día de la Raza, on October 12.
This year, Consumers Credit Union is observing National Hispanic Heritage Month by celebrating our bilingual employees (Have you noticed their profiles on our blog?) and recognizing the improvements we have made in service to our Spanish-speaking members over the past year.
We kicked off 2012 by hosting a Hispanic Focus Group in Holland. Not only did the meeting reinforce the fact that we care about the financial well-being of our members and communities, but we gained knowledge of how we can better meet those financial needs. The insights participants shared continue to shape the direction of our Enfoque Latino initiative as we plan for the coming year.
This year we’ve focused on building relationships in our community. We’ve gotten involved with the Lakeshore Minority Business Network in Holland and South Haven, a group that brings together business people seeking to contribute to the success of others and learn from each other. We celebrated Cinco de Mayo in Holland as a title sponsor of the LAUP Fiesta. Earlier in the year, we attended LAUP’s Youth Conference to chat with high school students from the surrounding area about their goals for the future, and sponsored Telamon Corporation’s screening of The Harvest/La Cosecha, a documentary of the challenges migrant workers face.
And this summer we launched a new Facebook page in Spanish! Now our members can receive news, promotions, and advice in their language of preference simply by logging onto Facebook. Click here to take a look!
Stay tuned the next few weeks to learn more about Hispanic Heritage Month and our Enfoque Latino initiative.