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Nelly Tobon is a Make the Road NV member who works to empower women in our community. Learn more about her below. 

 

How did you first get involved with Make the Road? 

“I was looking for spaces in the community where I could participate. My husband and I have a club called Migrantes de Uruapan where we do cultural activities and little by little we have become more involved in activism, we can bring entertainment, do festivals, or organize dances and it is beautiful to be able to maintain our traditions. We still lack many things in the community, this is one of the reasons I have become involved with Make the Road Nevada. I started in Make the Road by attending the committee, Familias Unidas”.

What is  Metamorphosis?

“It is a conference that empowers women who seek gender equality as well as a little bit of feminism intertwined with the community as not being individual matters but being intertwined”. 

What are other topics that interest you and help you empower other women?

“I have also studied the energy of the female body, how to use the energy of the uterus every day, how to work with the heart, and how they work together to make us better. I also worked with a teacher, Miranda Gray, she has an event called the Blessing of the Uterus and she also has written books and has loads of information. I brought her to Las Vegas to give a workshop and she has always been in this movement as well. Lately, I have also been working on Mental Health and all that encompasses. I started this for myself because when I came to live in the United States I was depressed. I also had anxiety due to being new to this country and new to the language. Since I have my own experiences, I was able to walk into these spaces with experience and knowledge. This is one of the first things I would like to share with the community. I experienced it and so have many others”. 

As an immigrant woman, what would you recommend that other immigrant women do to help with these stressful times and other instances of difficulty experienced by immigrant women? 

“First of all, find a support network, whether it is relatives, having friends or/and acquaintances who can support you, who you can call and ask them for advice. It is helpful for example when they can take care of your children for an hour or so, so that you can go out for an appointment, or do whatever chores you may need to do that day. The thing you need first is a support network. My second advice is to make the effort to adapt to this country; learn to speak English, get a driver’s license, try to, little by little, be integrating into society as a good person. My third advice would be to get involved in the community, maybe not to become a full-time activist, but if it is to see what happens, what groups there are, what organizations are working for the community, and also get to know the people.

Do you have anything else you would like to express? 

I have always felt welcome at Make the Road, I love the meetings and miss them, being in person with everyone, and I have always felt supported and at ease, as I am always learning and hopefully I will always stay involved so that the organization continues to grow and as we reach more and more people. 

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Exemple

Our families need fundamental things to thrive; one of these fundamental things is a home. In the state of Nevada, there are two ways families are forcibly removed from their homes; through a summary eviction or a formal eviction. Summary evictions are done with notices on a family’s door and are done legally bypassing the court system. Formal evictions go through the legal system, however, landlords almost never use this form of eviction since it would cost them money. Nevada is the only state in the United States that allows summary evictions.

 

Summary evictions aside from bypassing our legal system it also causes damage and tension within our family dynamics. The uncertainty that our families face with these types of evictions causes not only a toll on the heads of households but also on our children, who are already experiencing a global pandemic. What we need isn’t more evictions or a longer moratorium; what our community needs is a bold policy to protect tenants and their families. 

 

The housing moratorium in Nevada comes to an end on March 31st at the end of this moratorium, thousands of families will be at risk of eviction. This pandemic has left Millions without jobs, without income, and without protections for their homes. Allowing the accumulation of rents only digs a deeper hole that our families have to ‘find a way’ to get out of at the end of this moratorium. 

 

In a time where the CDC recommends that our communities stay home to stop the spread of a deadly virus, our state has allowed the eviction process to continue despite cries from the community for further assistance. We, along with our community, are asking our state legislators to listen to the community and take immediate action to protect tenant’s rights above the interests of corporations. You can make your voice heard this legislative session by submitting the form below; all responses will be submitted to the state legislature’s website.

 

Make your voice heard Here.

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Exemple

Black History Month is much more than the material covered in public education. The stories run deeper than that of the textbook and of colorless photos of pain and strength. They are of powerful people who rose above their struggles, continue to fight for their right to live, breathe, be and flourish in a society preprogrammed to suppress and deny them their place in the world. 

 

To Erika Washington of Make it Work Nevada, Black History Month was a time to study a ‘distant’ history covering the ‘regular folks’ we all learned about in school, but with time and with life experiences reasoned that Black History is quotidian, an ever-growing reality of Black folks in our own time and in our own neighborhoods. Ruby Duncan, a mother of the welfare rights movement, who stormed Ceaser’s Palace in 1971 and is responsible for the accessible WIC programs in Las Vegas; Ruby is living history. There are so many other folks who have made an impact in our community whose stories aren’t told; Senator Joe Neal, Nevada’s 1st Black  Attorney General, Aaron Ford, Steven Horsford, the 1st Black Congressman in Nevada, the list is extensive and their stories imposing. They are all Black History who continue to make a mark on our community. Living history is precious, as a result, we become more appreciative of the here and now. We are surrounded by and a part of history.

Erika is living history. 

Michael Lyle is a local Journalist whose perspective of Black History focuses through two lenses; the first through a lens of being apart of Black History and the other as a Black Journalist; upon learning more about his own history and that of the many leaders through history has impacted him; their struggles, their sacrifices, their journeys each play a crucial part in the development of Michael. On this journey of discovery with the goal in mind being solely knowledge and truth, frustration and anger find their way to the surface as horrible truths are brought to light, and with this light, current events are made more clear.

Michael is living history.

Eden is an activist, YPP member, and empowered woman whose view of Black History Month is a journey, filled with events and people who, as one continues on the journey, impact the story and concern many groups of people from all over the world. Black History isn’t sanctioned to the United States but rather spans the entire world and impacts every group of people. Acknowledging this has lead to many changes in the way Eden presents, views, and establishes her presence in a space; using the power of the stories she has learned along the way, she uses her voice to bring forth real change within her community. She has spoken to individuals of power in the community and has used her voice to advocate for Black students across the state.

Eden is living history. 

Adam Johnson is a school leader whose efforts to educate young people about the power of their history and use history as a force of empowerment. At his institution, students are Black history throughout the year thus furthering the extent of the course material and allowing students the time to fully understand the impact of Black history. With the educating of young people he hopes that through instruction, these same young folks go into the world with the courage, self-confidence, and discipline to achieve big goals and to educate the rest of the community. Students are leaders in training, the responsibility of educating them should not be taken lightly, this is why Black history is taught alongside the general History courses, to help students see themselves as a part of this evergreen history.

Adam is living history.

We are all apart of this living history. We must educate ourselves and those around us about the true history of our nation and about the value of others to the collective American story.

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