Latino Heritage events
Traditional Cuisine and Guest Chef
Pedro Alarcon, from La Casa De Pedro Restaurant in Watertown, came to the Café at Children's to serve some of his signature Latin dishes on September 15.
Celebration and Latino Achiever Awards Ceremony
At the annual lecture and awards ceremony on Sept. 23, local news reporter Jorge Quiroga gave a keynote address and singer Veronica Robles performed. During the ceremony, Children's Latino achievers were presented their awards by the Latino Heritage Committee.
¿Bailamos? Shall We Dance?
Dance to Latin rhythm with Boston's Hips on Fire on Oct. 3, from noon to 1 p.m. All employees are invited to come and learn how to do the salsa, bachata and meringue in the Patient Entertainment Center.
¡Creando y Celebrando! Create Your Own Party Favors
Children and patients can create Latino-inspired arts and crafts in the Patient Entertainment Center Oct. 6, from 12:30 to 2 p.m.
Congratulations to this year's four Latino Achievers, who were recognized at Children's Hospital Boston's annual Latino Achiever Awards Ceremony on Sept. 23. They were chosen for:
• demonstrating a history of achievement
in their field
• progressing in the hospital
• their potential for further advancement
• their commitment to voluntary community
service on behalf of youth
Alvaro Ugarte, Security Operations manager, leads the security and community service efforts at Martha Eliot Health Center (MEHC). During his five years at Children's, he's developed a solid relationship with the Boston police and works closely with them to ensure that security is top-notch. Ugarte also works closely with MEHC staff, organizing and coordinating special events to ensure they flow smoothly. As a manager, Ugarte leads by example and is an active member of the Ask Me! program and an instructor for Exceptional Care, Exceptional Service, which he's taught in both English and Spanish. "He's able to de-escalate situations with his great personality," says his nominator. "And he makes people feel as if they are the only people on Earth when he's dealing with them."
Jose Rivera, BS, began his career at Children's as a catheterization laboratory technician and worked his way up to become chief cardiovascular technologist. During his tenure, Rivera has recruited a highly motivated technical staff and goes to great lengths to help them further their education and expand their skills. With his support, several technicians have launched new careers and entered nursing and physician assistant programs. Rivera is just as dedicated to the patients, and frequently assists Latino families who need help with translation. When he's not in the laboratory, Rivera is often busy doing extracurricular work: He supports medical missions to El Salvador and volunteers much of his time to his daughter's school.
Researcher Betsy Navarro, PhD, assistant in Cardiology, has overcome many hurdles. First, she was able to transfer her education and training in Colombia to the United States, where she's carried out groundbreaking research. Then, despite a tragic accident that left her paralyzed below the waist and in chronic pain, she's still able to accomplish as much as any other postdoctoral fellow. "Navarro is consistently positive, optimistic and, regardless of physical handicaps, works harder than anyone else in the laboratory," says her nominator. Navarro regularly publishes her work in esteemed journals, including Nature and Science, and is currently working on research projects to measure ion currents from mammalian sperm—the first recordings from these cells ever made. As a result of her findings, Navarro received awards from her native country to sponsor her research, and in 2001, she was given an award by the Colombian government for excellence in research.
|Maria Luz Davila, RN cares for one of her patients
Maria Luz Davila, RN, neonatal intensive unit (NICU) staff nurse II, is an influential leader in the NICU and in the community at large. She's a dedicated member of the Infante Sano project, a Children's-affiliated organization that works with community sites located throughout the Dominican Republic to provide much-needed health care to pregnant mothers and infants. Davila helped develop the curriculum for teaching the medical staff and mothers courses about HIV, pediatric infection and emergency care. When she's working in Children's NICU, Davila is the friendly, familiar face that not only Spanish-speaking families identify with, but all families. "Her cultural sensitivity is contagious in the unit," says her nominator. "Because of Davila's advocacy for Spanish-speaking families, every nurse is more tuned in to their needs."