Last Saturday, February 25, 2023, as part of the celebration of Black History in the United States of America. The Garifuna Community Center, "Casa Yurumein". Held the opening ceremony of the new facilities in New York City, with the presence of elected officials of the State of New York, representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, representatives of Garifuna communities, international singer-songwriters, civil society organizations, academia, media, churches, and volunteers. More than 300 people gathered in a single feeling, filling the heart of the Big Apple with joy and human warmth.
The event began at 8:00 p.m. with dynamic programming that lifted the spirits of those present and highlighted the dignity of the Garifuna people and their diaspora connections.
The Vice President of the Board of Directors of Hondurans Against AIDS Edwin Alvarez, welcomed those present, highlighting the meaning of the word Yuremein which goes back to the past and beginning of the Garifuna people and tells a story of resistance, courage, solidarity and unity. Motivating those present to continue the struggle, working in an organized manner, strengthening the culture, instilling values to present and future generations and working for a more inclusive process in the United States of America.
I would like to highlight the participation of: Vice Consul of Guatemala Flor de María Sánchez and Manuel Eduardo Roca, Assembly Members Karines Reyes, Kenny Burgos, George Alvarez, Chantal Jackson and Senator Nathalia Fernandez. As well as the representation of Congressman Ritchie Torres, Senator Gustavo Rivera and Assemblywoman Yudelka Tipia. They ratified their support to the Garifuna community and to the future activities of Casa Yurumien and Hondurans Against AIDS.
Mrs. Mirtha Colon, president of Hondurans Against AIDS, gave a historical review of Casa Yuremein from its beginnings in 2009 to date. Highlighted the importance of community participation and strategic allies who believe in the processes of vindication and defense of the rights and freedoms of the Garifuna people. Highlighting the work done by Garifuna organizations in the United States to improve living conditions in Central America's countries of origin, he stated the vision of having their own building in the short term.
Having a solid organizational structure shows the progress in the process of organization, visibility, recognition and insertion of Garifuna in the North American institutionality.
The event ended with a cultural night full of talents and the rhythm of the drums, enlivened with international ambassadors of the Garifuna Culture such as Aurelio Martinez, Paula Castillo, Felix Gamboa, Nino Arzu and Don Cuellar. moderated by Arnold Ciego and Matías Mejía.
The Garifuna Community Center, Casa Yurumein provides services related to counseling, health, education, culture, entertainment and solidarity. It is located at 1300 Southen Blvd, Bronx, NY 10459