“Once social change begins, it cannot be reversed. You cannot un-educate the person who has learned to read. You cannot humiliate the person who feels pride. You cannot oppress the people who are not afraid anymore.”
These sentiments expressed by Cesar Chavez for me reflect Unlimited Potential’s vocation. For 25 years, the center has diligently assisted economically challenged families, undereducated families, families of diverse racial/ethnic membership in overcoming economic and social barriers. Unlimited Potential assists families in moving out of poverty by providing belonging, affirmation, educational opportunities, resources and the critical consciousness necessary for participants to engage as active citizens in their communities. This is the dream of Unlimited Potential and daily staff work to achieve these aims with the support of many dream brokers: volunteers, donors, and community members.
We begin with the knowledge that social issues of poverty and educational failure are systemic and must be addressed comprehensively. And so, Unlimited Potential promotes literacy skills, strengthens families, and prepares parents to engage in the democratic process altering the conditions that impede the well-being of their children. For some this is revolutionary (or novel) for me this approach is intuitive and, as research demonstrates, effective: addressing the root causes of social problems utilizing a multilevel approach.
Daily I witness mothers enhancing their education and with their newfound skills and confidence supporting the educational success of their children. I see mothers having found their voices who advocate on behalf of their children. I see fathers acquiring the competencies they need to lead their families into a better future and who know that strengthening a mother is an investment in the family. I see children having discovered the joy of reading with a light in their eyes. Most days, I am absolutely honored for the opportunity to work at Unlimited Potential and learn from the wisdom of the many people we serve. I invite those of you equally inspired to educate and empower families to become dream brokers and join the Unlimited Potential family.
Lorraine Moya Salas, PhD