Latino Children’s Fund (LCF) is helping Latino children & families reach their full human potential in education for a positive life ahead.
Latino Children’s Fund (LCF) is a nonprofit organization that has worked for more than 20 years, in the East LA community to level the playing field for socially disadvantage kids. It was founded on by two aspiring young law students who saw a gap in children achieving great academic success and social well being for the children in the inner city community of Los Angeles. Through its education center, LCF offers children from 5 to 14 years old a chance to a high-quality education integrated with family support and community engagement opportunities to thousands of children living in at-risk neighborhoods in Los Angeles County.
Latino Children’s Fund was founded in 1993 to establish a learning center in East Los Angeles that would serve as a community center so that children could have a place to go after school for free tutoring and an education center that provided a support network to help them succeed and reach their full potential. In 1999, they launched the first and only program for Latino children that provide bilingual tutoring to children struggling with English in the wake of Proposition 227—when the state measure abolished bilingual instruction in public schools. In response, LCF launched its one-on-one reading program to help Spanish-speaking schoolchildren become more proficient in English.
LCF’s mission was then revamped to serve to close a learning gap for Latino Children in the East Los Angeles area. A Los Angeles Times article published in April 1999 galvanized the East Los Angeles community and the LCF organization. It was the first of many to spotlight the plight of children and families living in despair in East Los Angeles inner community. It spoke of children of the East Los Angeles area slipping thru the gaps of the education system because of their language barrier and the struggle of their parents working to survive. At that time, little attention was paid to these forgotten children. Few services and safe havens existed for these impoverished Latino young boys and girls. Ninety percent did not speak English in school.
Within a year of the article appearing in the Los Angeles Times, founder Jesus Jimenez who was working on taking the California State Bar and working part-time at a law firm, decided to put his dream aside for a while and focus on getting LCF a real office, a 501 (c) status, and taking the organization to the next level. With the help of his families, college friends and several other law students, Jimenez was able to accomplish the aforementioned within a year. In 2000, the organization had a 501 (C) status and a building that was dead and abandon. This building later became the nucleus life for at-risk children to gather and learn, they were eager for a chance to grow and here they were offered a safe and nurturing environment filled with exploration, hope, and opportunity.
Today, Latino Children’s Fund continues to respond to the ever-growing and ever-changing needs of Southern California’s most challenging communities. The organization’s proven approach helps to build stronger, more stable Latino children and families with brighter hopes for the future.