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Roanoke nonprofit providing COVID-19 resources to Latino community

Though Latinos make up 10% of Virginia’s population, data suggests they account for 45% of cases

ROANOKE, Va. – A nonprofit in Roanoke is working to bridge the gap between the Latino community and the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) to help reach people who are most affected by the coronavirus.

Casa Latina provides resources like English classes and cultural activities for about 70 families a year.

“If the Latino population is affected is because some of them, they have to work, I mean they need food on the table, so they have to work, and they, they don’t have option. And, because most of the families. They live together in some small houses so that’s why maybe the propagation of the virus,” said Thania Torres, volunteer coordinator for Casa Latina.

Casa Latina has worked as a bridge with VDH make sure those who don’t speak English can still get accurate information regarding the coronavirus. According to the department of health, although Latinos make up just 10% of Virginia’s population, current data suggests that they account for 45% of cases.

“We’ve identified the fact that people need to have a place that they can go for testing, and that they can know about it in Spanish that happened through our partnership with the health department,” Casa Latina Board President Kris Tilley-Lubbs said.

Casa Latina has also teamed up with TAP and Feeding Southwest Virginia to help provide food throughout the week to people in need.

“If they don’t go to work, they are without any money whatsoever and they don’t all have the kind of family supports that some people that are native to this area would have so the food situation has been really severe,” Tilley-Lubbs said.

At the end of the day, the nonprofit wants to help serve the Latino community and act as a place where all are welcome to learn and grow. For more information on Casa Latina, you can visit its Facebook page here.


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