The morning of June 12th impacted not only the city of Orlando but the entire world. It was a moment where everyone let all hate aside and stood up for love and humanity. The City, the Country, and the World were #OrlandoStrong.
Hispanic Family Counseling immediately recognized that the city needed our help. With certified, culturally competent therapists, within the first two weeks we were able to provide:
This translated to 960 hours of community service which impacted 312 people who were in critical need.
At Hispanic Family Counseling, we make sure that the mental health services provided to our Hispanic community are of the utmost quality. As a result of the bond created through these interactions, therapists were invited and attended viewings of families who they assisted and have been servicing since the tragedy.
Hispanic Family Counseling has been working with 44 survivors and family victims several times a week, or as needed since the tragedy of June 12th at Pulse Nightclub occurred.
After PULSE, many survivors were left without jobs and little to no money for rent and car payments. Transportation itself became a huge challenge. The Ford Fund, provided an SUV to mobilize clients and therapists and better facilitate their needs during these difficult times. We have also distributed $1,560 in gift cards as well as several bus passes and a number of goods and donations received from:
Giving back to the community was in full effect in the city of Orlando. Everyone took a stand and united to help one another. #HispaFam provided or facilitated the following:
Not only is giving back to the Community important, but so is being involved with different entities, businesses, and organizations willing to make an impact in the community by assisting them with their dire needs. Among the many meetings taken to assist survivors, we have been involved with:
- Central Florida Foundation
- Hispanic Federation and their new project Somos Orlando
- American Red Cross
- United Way
- University of Central Florida
- National Association of Social Work
- American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
- Mental Health Association of Central Florida
- Hispanic Health Initiative
HFC has conducted community outreach by participating in 23 press conferences and interviews including among others:
At Hispanic Family Counseling, bettering the quality of life for our clients is what we live by, but we also believe in best practice. Therefore, we responsibly take care of our greatest assets who are our therapists and staff. To provide the best service to our community, especially during crisis intervention, we have been offering the following for our team:
At Hispanic Family Counseling, we take pride in aiding survivors and family victims of this tragedy. Our culturally competent, highly trained professionals not only counsel, but educate and bring awareness to our community. This evinces our motto of: bettering the quality of life for all families and individuals suffering from Mental Health conditions.
During the past two months, our community has been hurting, we continue to mourn. We experienced probably the most traumatic event in our lives. It has been extremely emotional. It also feels like a personal attack given that all this happened in my community, to my people.
The level of frustration, pain, and hurt is surreal. However, I believe that we are a RESILIENT community, and while we continue to grieve, I do believe that we will heal, never forget, but HEAL. I am very grateful for all the help, donations, and assistance we have received over the last two months. There have been many donations provided by community leaders, from large institutions to humble individuals. We value and humbly accept your contributions and promise to channel them to those in need to the best of our abilities. Thanks for your support to #HispaFam.
With peace and love,
Denisse Centeno-Lamas, LCSW
Hispanic Family Counseling, Inc.
Monday, June 12th, 2017 marked a year after the tragedy of Pulse. In the past year, our community has been hurting and we continue to mourn. We experienced probably the most traumatic event of our lives. It has been extremely emotional and has felt like a personal attack to all in our community.
For many of us, it has also been a year of difficult, but much needed, work with a heartbroken community. The work only started with being first responders. Hispanic Family Counseling Inc. continues to serve in the efforts to help foster healing. Throughout the year, we have participated in Pulse related events, such as Lessons from the Pulse Massacre Response, CommUNITY Rainbow Run, and UCF’s Remembering Pulse, determined to stand in solidarity with our community.
In addition, we had a memorandum of understanding with Hispanic Federation's Proyecto Somos Orlando in order for our therapists to provide services in their location. This provided clients with a place where they could get services and feel safe again after the tragedy. We also worked with the City of Orlando and the Orange County Government on Orlando United Day, having 18 therapists volunteer in case anyone needed psychological first aid at the remembrance event that day.
Our agency also provided free culturally competent counseling at our agency on June 12th and 13th, 2017 to anyone as we remembered the year mark of Pulse. We have also continued to see clients who are Pulse survivors, family of victims, and community members, with the help of grants and funds designated for working with those affected by this tragedy. We are grateful to have received grants and funds from a variety of community sources, which include:
Likewise, we have been grateful for all of the help, grants, funds, donations, and assistance we have received over the past year. There have been many donations provided by community leaders, from large institutions to humble individuals. We value and humbly accept your contributions and promise to channel them to those in need to the best of our abilities. Thanks for your support to #Hispafam.
Additionally, we were honored to have received a visit from Representative Carlos Guillermo Smith, who presented HFC with a copy of the House Resolution 8077, recognizing “Pulse Remembrance Day” in Florida, as a thank you for the work the agency has done after the Pulse tragedy.
During this past year, the level of frustration, pain and hurt has been surreal. However, HFC believes we are a RESILIENT community, and while we continue to grieve, we will heal, never forget, but HEAL. We know the work is not over, which is why we will not cease to provide continuous support to anyone who was affected directly or indirectly by the Pulse tragedy. We will continue to serve in any way we can in our enduring effort to be a haven of strength for our community, especially during times such as this.
Hispanic Family Counseling was created in 2012, with the desire and passion to help our community. The Latino community of Central Florida has substantially grown over the last decade and there are not many agencies that specifically target the necessities that we have as Hispanics, starting with the language barriers, but beyond that helping with the acculturation and assimilation process.
Our vision could not be more precise for this difficult moment: “To be the haven of strength to those in despair and help them embark on a journey of hope where perseverance coexists with education, truth lives with optimism and healing is the destination.”
We are here to serve our community; we are here to serve you. Please do not hesitate to contact us at 407-382-9079 or by contacting us on our website if there is anything we can do to help you.
With peace and love,
The #HispaFam Team