On Mondays and Thursdays, our downtown office is bustling with the sounds and smells one might normally associate with a fiesta.
Since 1998, Watari has been making in-roads into the Latin American community in the Downtown Eastside, seeking to provide support, health promotion, education, substance misuse counselling, counselling for temporary farm workers, and support around immigration issues.
Our Latin American Outreach position has used the community’s connection to music, food, and citizenship to engage individuals and families in health fairs, support groups, family groups, a community kitchen, and growing an urban garden.
Berta Perez has continued to create trust and build bridges within a community that has every reason to be cautious about seeking services. Many of the people supported in the program struggle with health and immigration issues and come from countries where civil war was a reality.