Latina Leadership Council

The Maria Mangual Unidas Fund


Chicago Foundation for Women's Latina Leadership Council supports the Foundation's grantmaking and fundraising goals through the Maria Mangual Unidas Fund. Named in 2009 in honor of feminist and social activist Maria Mangual (previously the Unidas Fund), the fund award grants to organizations working in Chicago's Latina community. Read more about the fund's grantees below.


Rainbow House
Domestic Violence Prevention and Education Program, $5,000 
Rainbow House's Domestic Violence Prevention and Education Program (Outreach) is designed to: 1) Provide women experiencing family violence with the education and resources they need to successfully seek help for their situation and (2) Break the cycle of violence by educating children, specifically girls, about the characteristics of a healthy relationship. 


Latinos Progresando
Violence Against Women Act Project - $5,000
The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) Project provides immigrant victims of domestic abuse access to the public and legal benefits of VAWA so they can remain in the U.S. apart from abusive spouses who may control their immigrant status.

Telpochcalli Community Education Project
The Women's Cooperative - $3,000
The Women's Cooperative (Servicios Hogarena) supports Latina women from the community to develop their own microenterprises, thus gaining economic independence.

WINGS Program Inc.
Suburban Latina Outreach - $2,000
Suburban Latina Outreach provides individual mentoring to disadvantaged Latina women and raises awareness about domestic violence within the Latino community in Chicago's north and northwest suburbs.


Amigas Latinas Association
General Operating Support - $3,000
Amigas Latinas empowers Latina lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning women who love women by providing a safe environment, personal growth, support, education and advocacy to impact family, friends and the larger community. To fulfill this vision, Amigas works to educate and empower its constituents, service providers, the Latino community, the general gay community and legislators about issues relevant to the Latina LBTQQ community.

Centro Comunitario Juan Diego
General Operating Support - $3,000
Centro Comunitario Juan Diego was founded by eight Latino immigrant women in 1993. Its mission is to build leadership in the community to promote positive social change while serving those in need. Programs focus on health access and education, family literacy, community organizing and human rights, and social services. This grassroots organization serves Latinas in South Chicago who are low-income or live below the poverty level.

Voces Primeras
General Operating Support - $3,000
Voces Primeras creates and distributes documentary-style features of pioneering Latinas to the educational, political and retail markets. In order to create these films, the resources of women and their archives have to be available. It is the secondary goal of this company to encourage the archiving of these women’s writings, ephemera, articles and photographs at colleges and universities. The importance of documenting these stories can be seen in the limited availability of this kind of material, in this medium.


General Operating Support - $2,500
Through an innovative model supported by volunteerism and philanthropy, CommunityHealth delivers comprehensive, patient-centered health care at no cost to low-income, uninsured individuals and families in need of a medical home. Established in 1993, CommunityHealth is the largest free clinic in Illinois and one of the leading free clinics in the United States. With the economic downturn continuing and more people losing their jobs and their health insurance, CommunityHealth has seen almost a 50% increase in the number of individuals enrolling as patients since the start of 2009. Despite the challenge to ComunityHealth's limited resources with this ever-growing demand, the health center is committed to expanding programs and access. Highlights of this commitment include: 1) a new on-site Oral Health Program to provide free dental care to all patients in need of basic prophylactic and restorative services; 2) enhanced audiology and ear, nose and throat services; 3) a new lung health education program; 4) an expanded ultrasound screening program; and 5) the establishment of a satellite clinic on Chicago's South Side.

Community Organizing & Family Issues
General Operating Support - $2,500
Community Organizing & Family Issues (COFI) seeks to improve the quality of life for women, children, and families in low-income communities by engaging women of color as leaders in community and public policy (systems) change. COFI will use funds to provide leadership development and expand the participation of Latina mothers and grandmothers in COFI's citywide organization of grassroots women leaders who are members of POWER-PAC (Parents Organized to Win, Educate and Renew - Policy Action Council). The women leaders of POWER-PAC come together across communities and across cultures to build community and to create public policies for the betterment of low-income Chicago women and children.  POWER-PAC's agenda in the coming year includes: pushing for recess in Chicago elementary schools, working to overcome barriers for low-income and immigrant families to access quality early learning programs, expanding restorative justice programs for elementary students, and expanding a health agenda for children and families.


Centro Romero
General Operating Support - $1,000
Centro Romero (CR) serves 3,947 persons in the Women's Program with three component projects. The Domestic Violence Project served 132 women with individual counseling, court advocacy and support groups. In addition, 183 of their children benefited from support groups, and 195 elementary school students and their parents attended prevention and education workshops. In the Health Outreach and Interpretation Project, CR assisted 468 individuals with language barriers to receive public assistance and case counseling on health and human service issues and enrolled 1,054 children in the public health insurance program for children. Centro also educated 1,700 community residents on the importance of preventive health care measures and the availability of health care services through organizing community education projects, seminars, workshops, and health fairs. In the Education Organizing Project, CR provided leadership development, including community organizing training, to 96 Latinas. CR also trained 119 Latina girls and women as HIV peer educators. In its Youth Learning and Leadership Program, CR serves 246 children and youth. Seventy-one youngsters between the ages of six through 17 attended the intensive after-school program that includes academic support, tutoring, recreational activities, and field trips to museums.  Additionally, 130 youth ages eight to 17 participated in a summer soccer league, and another 45 children attended special events. The Legal Services Program served 5,014 clients with immigration and naturalization issues, including 863 adults who completed applications for citizenship, 120 clients that became legal permanent residents (LPR), and another 420 clients who were naturalized. The Adult Education Program served 1,545 persons in ESL and other classes and citizenship preparation.

Centro San Bonifacio
General Operating Support - $1,000
The mission of Centro San Bonifacio is to promote personal and collective self-development within the immigrant Hispanic community through programs based on needs related to health, education, solidarity and human rights. As an egalitarian organizational model and as members of the very community it serves, Centro integrates a collective, active decision-making process with a commitment to mutual responsibility. To fulfill this mission, Centro San Bonifacio has the following concrete objectives: Promote mental, physical, emotional, spiritual and community health; Promote partnership, unity and friendship through effective networks of mutual support and solidarity; Support and promote the development of each person so that they are better able to apply their skills and talents to community; Provide service and for their own personal empowerment; Provide structural support for the creation of new organizational initiatives which cover the needs of the local community.

Teatro Luna 

General Operating Support - $1,000
Teatro Luna was founded in June 2000 by Coya Paz and Tanya Saracho, with an original ensemble of ten women from diverse Latina/Hispana backgrounds. It is dedicated to exploring the varied experiences and cultures of Latina/Hispana women; showcasing the creative talents of Latina, Hispana, and/or Pan-Latina artists; and providing a forum for social political, artistic, and educational outreach into itscommunities. To date, Teatro Luna has created three original ensemble works based on autobiographical experience and true life stories. In addition to creating and presenting original ensemble work, Teatro Luna nurtured new plays by emerging Latina/o writers.

2007 grantees

Mujeres Latinas en Acción
Latina Portraits - $1,000
"Latina Portraits 2007" will go above and beyond Mujeres' previous report, 1996's "Latina Portraits." It will rely upon the growing scholarly literature concerning U.S. Latinas in addition to literature that describes and analyzes Chicago's regional economy, job market and its educational, social and political realities to provide a substantive analysis of Latinas' experiences in the greater Chicago area. The study will comprise quantitative and qualitative analysis, focus groups and oral history interviews. The study will attempt to provide a précis of the region's Latina history including information on immigration and migration history, Latinas' roles in the local economy, and their hand in shaping the social and cultural makeup of the areas.

General support - $500
Mujeres Latinas en Acción uses general operating revenue to provide critically-needed services that cut across specific programmatic areas such as general intake, childcare and volunteer development. Moreover, Mujeres provides support, guidance, counseling and community outreach to more than 9,000 Latinas, youth and their families.

Pilsen Alliance
Whittier Parent Leadership Project - $2,000
The organization aims to involve Pilsen residents, businesses and institutions in community organizing and planning; implement advocacy and action-oriented campaigns, and conduct action-oriented research. To achieve these goals, Pilsen Alliance coordinates two campaigns—Lideres Buscando Respuestas y No Evasivas as well as the Pilsen Is Not for Sale Campaign—and serves as the lead non-profit partner of a local Community School Project—the Whittier-Pilsen Alliance Community School Project.

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