March: Advocacy Day in Albany


On March 14th, a group of Center for Family Life staff and program participants in our Community Study Circles ventured to Albany to present their advocacy priorities to elected officials!

Through funding provided by the Thriving Families, Safer Children Youth, Family, and Community initiative, we offered a series of Chinese and Spanish Community Study Circle (CSC) workshops, which were co-created and led by program staff with lived experience. These eight-week workshops used a popular education methodology to introduce community participants to community-specific and citywide data on education, housing, economic development, environmental issues, public sanitation, food access and child welfare participation. Group members explored the “story” that data tells about community experiences, contextualizing this data “story” in their own immediate and personal life experiences. Workshops culminated in final presentations to policy makers and elected officials, where participants shared their personal experiences and ideas for community strengthening!

CSC Chinese Group 1 (2)

A significant highlight of our Community Study Circle program was our advocacy trip this March. CFL staff, including CSC group leaders, and Spanish and Chinese program participants travelled to Albany where they engaged directly with state officials to discuss policy recommendations and to elevate community priorities. Our team was incredibly grateful to meet with the offices of Senators Iwen Chu, John C. Liu, and Roxanne Persaud. Together, our team presented the collective concerns of the Chinese and Spanish communities in Sunset Park.


After their day of advocacy, we asked participants to share their reflections. Here is what they chose to share:

“Having participated in study circles at CFL gave me the opportunity to develop my leadership skills and proudly represent our Latino community in Albany. It was an experience that will be unforgettable for me. Our voice was heard, we carried a message and we were heard. Now it is up to the senators to work for our needs so that our community’s goals can be met!”

“For me, it was a wonderful trip and a great learning experience. It was my first time going to Albany, I am satisfied with my small contribution to our community. It is a phenomenal experience because of La Union Hace la Fuerza (strength in unity). God willing, the official electors can commit themselves to work for us and provide us with support for each topic and solution that we have presented.”

“It was great working with the Spanish speaking group, which allowed two marginalized groups to unite for such special cause. Thank you for inviting me!” 


This trip truly emphasizes the power of diverse communities coming together to expand their reach and impact. We are so proud of our CFL staff and program participants for voicing their concerns and advocating for changes in our community and throughout NYC!

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